Classic Bowling For Soup Antics Soar Through Cardiff

All the way from Texas, Bowling For Soup, your favourite fun-loving, pop-punk guys are back in the UK for a whopping eight dates. These will be the biggest shows the band has ever performed. The band started out back in 1994, and what better way to celebrate the band’s immense dedication to music, to themselves and to us, the fans, for their 30th anniversary than an epic, fun-filled tour to remember?

Bowling For Soup – You Asked For It Tour

Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024

Words: Jade Colvin

Photography: Georgia Brittain

Supporting the band on this tour are none other than Vandoliers and Less Than Jake, both recieving very warm welcomes from tonights packed out Utilita Arena Cardiff. Now, every inch was filled, wall to wall, in a sea of excitable fans and the moment we had all been waiting for.. The countdown began for Bowling For Soup.

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

The guys head straight into Emily and My Wena, back to back, with bananas comically everywhere you looked. Jaret confidently addresses the crowd, sarcastically exclaiming they did “the impossible of two songs in a row! Give it up for us.” Right away, it was just the playful jesting you would expect from these guys.

Smiles filled the arena with joke after joke. Jaret was on top form with, of course, Chris, Gary and Rob to bounce off, and wasn’t Rob bouncing with that bass, looking absolutely freeing.

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

The stage was set up with beer barrels, complete with a bar and the support bands were even on stage hanging out as if they were just chilling with their friends and family in a relaxed atmosphere, totally at ease.

Jaret expressed how their third song, Out The Window, should have been famous. But it came out around the same time as Girl All The Bad Guys Want, so they teased and poked fun at how they were a professional band, and so they’re leaving it until the end. Everyone buckled with laughter, as we can totally relate. If you’ve ever seen a band or artist live, more times than not, that is what they do with their biggest hits.

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

They really were professional, though, as much as they joke and banter, even after Punk Rock 101. When they did their ‘musically enhanced photo opportunity,’ things seemed to go slightly awry. The crowd continued to sing Rick Astley’s Never Going To Give You Up even after the music was cut. 

Bowling For Soup made you feel like it was part of the act. With constant crowd interactions, it was all just part of the entertainment and highlighted their extensive experience. 

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

Speaking of experience, their years of cheeky tunes reflected in the crowd range that had flocked here tonight, with parents now bringing their younglings, the next generation to continue to enjoy the love for this band. 

Jaret recalled an interview he did many years ago. “It’s not like I’ll be in my 50s singing about high school.” But here they are and very much loved for it. It seems more and more these days we want the nostalgia of that era, and they gave the people what they wanted.

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

Bowling For Soup cannot express their gratitude enough for everyone’s support through the years, and they believe they have crossed the pond almost 50 times. They say they really love it here and give special thanks to Steve Homer, who promoted their show back in 2000 and has stuck with them through the years up to their biggest shows ever.

Every night of the tour, the band gave away a Les Paul guitar signed by all of them to one lucky winner in that venue. How amazing and generous is that? Unfortunately, it wasn’t me who won.

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

More fun was had when The Punk Rock Factory ran from the bar on stage for a quick takeover, playing the Phineas and Ferb theme tune that BFS has been playing for the last nine years.

For a brief serious moment, on such a large platform to reach many, Jaret also touched on the importance of mental health, how he struggled back in 2013 with depression and anxiety when there was talk of a band split. He claims he is the happiest person, so it really can get anyone, and he calls for us all to support anyone struggling. 

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

Bowling For Soup were straight back into singalongs with The Bitch Song and Girl All The Bad Guys Want, then hilariously, they just sat down with drinks, chatting amongst themselves, whilst the crowd pleaded for an encore. 

Cheerily ending with 1985, this was a night of classic Bowling For Soup antics, absolutely hilarious, childish humour from start to finish, exactly what you would expect and more.

Happy 30th anniversary, Bowling For Soup. See you at Download.

Bowling For Soup - Utilita Arena Cardiff - 23 February 2024
Bowling For Soup – Utilita Arena Cardiff – 23 February 2024. Photo: Georgia Brittain/MetalTalk

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