Buckcherry come out and play what feels begrudgingly to an early crowd. They practically play in darkness which doesn’t help them to lift the crowd. “You’re so strong” singer Josh slurs before asking how many crazy bitches lurk in the venue. It’s a bit of a hit and miss and despite seeming to put in the effort the set falls a little short. It’s a quick opening set, we’ll forgive, forget and move on.
Now here’s a band you could place anywhere, and we mean anywhere, and they’d find a way to own it. No matter the situation Bowling For Soup will grab it, twist and turn with it and throw it back out there in their favour. They display a wonderful friendship onstage between they band and crowd, something many bands should aspire to. A BFS show really isn’t a BFS show without some jokes and giggles and in a setting like tonight they know they can really push their usual limit. A moment sees Jared complain London wouldn’t allow their freakin’ awesome backdrop up, which of course in Wales produces a barrage boos.
Jaret and guitarist Chris easily know how to engage a crowd and it’s amazing how “If the person next to you isn’t doing this…” works every damn time to get them moving. One of the highlights sees the band take a moment to pose on stage like glam rock stars whilst music plays in the background to set the scene. Not only this but a routine to finish the session off, of course smiles fill the arena. “We are the band you can wave to” claims Jaret before quickly following it up with “Do not wave at Steel Panther though, unless you’re waving your tits”, to which we imagine is true. “I hate goodbyes” and so do we when it comes to the end of a BFS show. They’ve had a great reaction and performed another triumphant set.
The banter rolls off them as singer Michael and guitarist Satchel toy with each other all night, often at times reminding me of good old BBC Bottom sketches as they mock penis sizes, tits and provide ample of overzealous blue steel expressions. It provides laughs throughout their long set and breaks it up neatly. “This is my favourite show of the tour so far” shouts Michael before interrupted by Satchel before they once again tangent off about how many girls they’ve shagged in Cardiff.
A few weight low blows are thrown at BFS during a shout out, which could be taken either way, and is by the crowd half cringing, half laughing.
They’re not all just shits and giggles though as mid set sees Satchel pull out a flavourful solo that blows the crowd away. A few songs later sees the drummer Stix throw his drumstick overheard in what appears as a randomly act only for Michael to catch it and throw it back overhead in perfect timing for him to carry on. Remarkable.
Their energy and antics don’t stop for the entire set and the applause does’t either. 17 Girls In A Row gets many women pulled up on stage to dance and as an extra treat rock-trio The Lounge Kittens join them for encore Party All Day before spraying the crowd with confetti.
It’s been a truly entertaining night and I’m sure everyone is going home feeling that little bit extra dirty.
Steel PantherCardiff Motorpoint Arena - October 16th 2016.
Photographer: Nadine Ballantyne - www.nadineballantyne.com