Bowling For Soup at O2 Academy Leeds

Pop-Punkers Bowling For Soup returned to the UK last week with their anniversary tour, aptly named the ‘How About Another Round’ tour. They also brought with them American rapper MC Lars and fellow pop-punkers The Dollyrots, as well as Nottingham based band Lacey.

By Jane Howkins


Lacey played first, performing a style of pop-punk not unlike that of early Brand New (Your Favourite Weapon/Deja Entendu era). They also went down very well with the crowd, and a cover of Blink 182’s infamous song Dammit was received well, alongside their own material. With the genre going through a slight reform at the moment, it’s perfectly feasible that Lacey could emerge as one of the big hitters of the current movement, and their recently announced headline dates in June also show that. MC Lars emerged between each band’s set to perform for ten minutes, with one such moment involving him calling a girl’s mother on her phone live on stage, to the amusement of the rest of the fans.

The Dollyrots are a band that have been around for almost as long as tonight’s headliners, yet somehow never quite managed to hit the big time as perhaps they should have done. Their songs were mostly short and sweet, with lead singer and bassist Kelly Ogden jumping around behind her microphone manically, and some hilarious onstage banter being delivered by her and fellow bandmate and guitarist Luis Cebezas. A joke about dead monkeys went down well, with a cover of Melanie Safka’s Brand New Key also being played, and several jokes about the English equivalent (The Combine Harvester by The Wurzels) being made, leading to a mass chant of ‘Yorkshire! Yorkshire!’ from within the Leeds crowd. Other highlights of the set included a cover of Joan Jett’s Bad Reputation (the band are on her record label Blackheart Records) and My Best Friend’s Hot.

Bowling For Soup took to the stage a little later, and were greeted rapturously by the sold out crowd. Every song played seemed to go down well, with particular favourites being The Bitch Song, Girl All The Bad Guys Want, andPunk Rock 101. Unfortunately, the PA System decided to break near the end of their third song Ohio (Come Back To Texas), which was greeted by more chants of ‘Yorkshire! Yorkshire Tea!’, and whilst the technical problems continued throughout the night, the band made it up to the crowd by making the most of it and fully completing their set past the venue’s curfew.

As with any good pop-punk band, the onstage chitchat from frontman Jaret Reddick and bandmates more than made up for any technical issues, and they created an infectiously fun mood for the evening. A pop-punk medley and a cover of Stacey’s Mom by Fountains of Wayne were also enjoyed, and proved that the genre is still very much alive.

A fun evening for all, here’s hoping this isn’t a farewell tour!


Lacey, MC Lars, The Dollyrots and Bowling For Soup played at the 02 Academy Leeds on Wednesday 3 February 2016