They've Still Got It...
The Offspring have been together for almost 20 years, during that time they're style has changed, the hair-cuts have changed and even the line-up has now changed but one thing remains constant and that is the fact that they will draw in a crowd.
It was just over two years ago that The Offspring last played a headline tour here in the UK and on that occasion they managed to fill Wembley Arena two nights in a row, where as tonight has still not sold out. This may be smaller-scale than their 'Conspiracy of One' tour but has managed to draw a diverse crowd. Don't get me wrong, the majority of people here are between 15 and 17 and are the exact crowd you might expect from a band that have pushed out 'Original Prankster' and 'Pretty Fly for a White Guy', but none the less there are some other fans here that quite clearly have 'Ignition' and 'Smash' engraved on their hearts far more than 'Splinter'.
Songs from the latest offering 'Splinter' start the set, and amazingly the hit-single 'Hit That' is out the way and done with by song number 3. The rest of the set consists of a few songs from 'Splinter', only 'Want You Bad' from 'Conspiracy of One' and the majority of 'Americana' along with a handful of tracks from the previous two albums - with the first two not being touched at all. This is quite a pleasant surprise and the most amazing thing seems to be that the members of the crowd expected to only known the latest and poppiest material seem to find the earlier material just as important.
Throughout the set they manage to have the zest for music that a lot of bands from The Offspring's era have lost and they play every song as if it was their last ever performance, full of energy and interaction with the crowd. It's clear to see why The Offspring are still here, seven albums and more singles than you can shake a CD-rack at later.
Considering the average age of the audience, the band choose to end on 'Self Esteem' - a song that most of the crowd would have been aged 5 for during its release, yet it goes down just as well as any of the new material and is sung along to by the whole of Wembley's vast crowd. It ends with a promise of their return later in the year, perhaps a hint to The Carling Weekend?
If you missed out in March, then don't miss out again in the summer, The Offspring are still one of the few bands that need to be watched by anyone that wants to see live music.