Preview: Bowling For Soup at O2 Guildhall, Southampton

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Forget Santa, Bowling For Soup are coming to town! The quartet of pop-punk icons are bringing their ‘Almost Christmas’ tour to Southampton at the end of November, where they are set to play the O2 Guildhall.

Originally from Texas, the band have been synonymous with the pop-punk genre since 2000, with the release of their first major album, Let’s Do It For Johnny. Further albums such as A Hangover You Don’t Deserve (2004) and The Great Burrito Extortion Case (2006) cemented the band as staples in the pop-punk wave of the 2000s. Later albums include Fishin’ For Woos (2011) and Lunch. Drunk. Love. (2013), and they even released a Christmas album called Merry Flippin’ Christmas (Volumes 1 & 2) back in 2009.

The band have played almost annually in the UK for the last decade, and have also performed multiple acoustic tours here over the years. Earlier this year, they brought the ‘Get Happy’ tour back to the UK for a nine-date return of their 2007 tour of the same name. They’ve had a variety of support acts over the years, including Army of Freshmen, Bloodhound Gang, The Dollyrots and Patent Pending, who are also set to support on this upcoming holiday jaunt in the UK.

The only way a Bowling for Soup concert can be described is one huge pop-punk party. The four band members come on stage and instantly everybody in the audience has a permanent grin on their faces; one that doesn’t falter until long after the performance is over. Their repartee in between songs involves the audience with a familiarity that makes you feel like old friends, while still being utterly hilarious (for example, at a show in 2013 somebody in the audience gave them a blow-up sheep, so you can imagine how that went down!)

They play their songs with the same gusto as they did twenty years ago, while the audience screams the lyrics along with them, dancing and partying as though it was their last concert ever. It is such an experience to be part of a crowd that knows every word, because these songs made up a lot of our adolescences (try to tell me that ‘Girl All The Bad Guys Want’ wasn’t a staple of your teen years). Also, you honestly haven’t lived until you’ve sang along at the top of your voice to the Phineas and Ferb theme song (a Bowling Four Soup original!) with a bunch of other twenty, thirty and even forty year olds. It truly is a bonding experience.

As part of an eight-date tour to kick off the holiday season, Bowling For Soup is expected to bring a storm of Christmas cheer to Southampton, likely playing songs from their holiday album, Merry Flippin’ Christmas, as well as their biggest hits from the past two decades. Whether you’ll be dancing to their incredible cover of Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’ or one of their own classic songs, you’ll be sure to spend the whole concert willing it to never end.

Bowling For Soup is playing the Southampton O2 Guildhall on November 30th, watch the video for ‘Girl All The Bad Guys Want’ below and get your tickets here.

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