After a three-year hiatus, the pop-punk band ‘The Story so Far’ tour in celebration of their latest album Proper Dose. On a Wednesday evening, 10th October, entering Glasgow’s The Garage, the crowd doesn’t seem phased by this departure; the show was even sold out. There is excitement laced between the nightclub/venue as murmurs are heard throughout the crowd about the night ahead.
The Story So Far takes the stage at 8pm exactly. The melodic twang of guitars introduces the first couple songs of ‘Nerve and ‘Proper Dose’’: and in the first four bars of the song a mosh pit develops. A collective cheer after this high-energy opening almost drowns out frontman Cannon’s thanking of everyone to be here. The audience mouths move, demonstrating the hours devoted to memorisation. A chant begins (“The Story So Far”) after; the audience asserts themselves as a collective community.
‘Things I can’t change’, from their second album, begins giving off an anthem-like quality. It overshadows the last two songs; the building’s voices almost drown the microphoned Cannon, who punches the air, leading them on. The two guitarists keeping to the edge of the stage as ‘All wrong’, ‘The Glass’, ‘Let it go’, ‘Heavy Gloom’, ‘Keep this up’ continue the show. Cannon thanks the crowd with genuity again. ‘Singing now feels good’, ‘Drink safe, Drink safe’ are other small positivities are said in between the songs.
Proper Dose’s leading single ‘Upside Down’ - is partly overshadowed by the roaring of ‘Roam’ playing directly after.The entire room jumps in time and with the audience involvement with overpowering lyrical tones and two mosh-pits seeming to be opening up; the resonance of their older songs are evident.
With a glance, the crowd who seems to largely be in their mid-20s suggests these could be loyal fans from when The Story So Far’s original albums came out in 2011-12. Perhaps then linking it with the common belief of Pop Punk being branded as “dead” in 2018. The days of My Chemical Romance and Green Day are over, and perhaps the fans are only there for the older pop punk.
Yet, the chant for an encore after the final bars of “Quicksand” is deafening. And as The Story so Far’s most successful song ‘clairvoyant’’s tuneful acoustic guitar plays, the room changes tone; under the white stage lights couples embrace each other, phones are out filming and members of the crowd climb onto others shoulders. The chorus’s mantra of “Don’t paint me black when I used to be golden” ends the set with the same vitality that started it: yet this time on a softer note. The cheers after the show ending go on for long after the band exits.
Yes, the eldest songs proved the most lively. But, the concert never dipped further than this. In recent years the pop-punk scene has not hold as much prevalence as it once did, but this show seemed pretty alive. Cannon’s leadership of the show paid off with intense audience immersion proved a special dedication of both audience and band for an experience. Perhaps loyal fans overshadow the loss of a scene.