MXPX are another of those American melodic punk bands that have been around for years and years and yet have never quite broken into the mainstream in the UK. They do however have a solid underground following and there are plenty gathered in the Lock Up tent for their Sunday tea time slot.
Songs like ‘Party, My House, Be There’ exemplify what MXPX are all about, it’s lightweight, safe and friendly punk and that’s about it. I was hoping that in the live environment they might come over a little heavier or harder but it seems not, which means that there’s no punch or drive behind the guitars even in the faster sections. They do however get the crowd down at the front moving and the performance is solid. Singer and bassist Mike Hererra does a good job of working the crowd and the whole band puts plenty into the show. Occasionally they drift closer to Pennywise sounding territory (& are all the better for it) but by & large it’s easy on the ear melodic punk, which after a while begins to sound all very familiar.
The crowd are into it though and duly sing along to tracks like ‘Middlename’, ‘Responsibility’ and a cover of the Clash’s ‘Should I Stay or Should I Go’. They save the best until last with crowd favourite ‘Punk Rawk Show’ and leave to healthy applause. You really can’t dislike MXPX, they have their moments and they are entertaining to watch but the material isn’t outstanding and there are several other bands on this stage today that blow them away.