Bowling For Soup, O2 Academy, Birmingham - review and pictures

By Megan Archer | Music | Published:

It was the Greatest Day watching Bowling for Soup at O2 Academy Birmingham, as the American rock band thrilled a packed crowd with an incredible two-hour performance.

Bowling For Soup at the O2 Academy in Birmingham. Pic: Chris Bowley

The pop-punk Texan group hit up the city centre last night, exactly 10 years after they brought The Get Happy Tour to the UK back in 2008.

With their infectious humour, playful jibes about their weight, and some of their most popular hits, BFS did not disappoint.

Kicking off the night just after 9pm with ‘I Don’t Wanna Rock’, the group performed every track from their debut album ‘Drunk Enough to Dance’, in celebration if its 15th year.

And barely half an hour into the show, the foursome – Jaret Reddick, Chris Burney, Erik Chandler and Gary Wiseman – sent the audience into chaos with one of their best-known tracks ‘Girl All The Bad Guys Want’ from their 2002 album.

Lead singer Jaret, now aged 45, yelled out to the crowd: “Great to see you, it’s been too long. It’s a pleasure to play rock and roll here.

“There’s something about this fair city that always brings out the hangover in us. We always seem hungover when we come here.”

Acting like big kids on stage, the group poked fun at each other and the audience with Jaret even saying: “I forgot to lose weight for this tour so if I fall don’t catch me.”


Half way through the night they announced the ‘countdown to 1985’ with a huge digital timer appearing behind the stage to show how many minutes were left until the smash hit was later played.

But before that, Jaret teased the audience mercilessly by asking if anyone knew Bowling For Soup co-wrote and sang the theme for Disney’s Phineas and Ferb, despite saying they weren’t going to play it.

Titled Today is Gonna Be a Great Day, the band gave in to the demands of a begging audience and played the well-known childrens’ tune, which the crowd belted out with them.


Jaret, kitted out all in black with his trademark red hair, added: “Thank you for being here this evening. Hopefully come and see us again.

"Hope you are all thinking to yourself this was one of your greatest days,” - before the band sang another favourite, Greatest Day.

BFS finished a dynamic performance with Ohio (Come Back to Texas) chosen in an audience vote, followed by 1985 – a track which sent the crowd wild.

And the team, especially Jaret with 49-year-old Chris on the guitar and 43-year-old bass player Eric, kept the fans in tears of laughter in between songs, while 39-year-old drummer Gary span on a turntable behind.

Jaret said: “Last night we got so drunk our band broke up, but we’re back together. It only lasted four minutes - and that’s how we’ve lasted for 25 years.”

Overall, a stellar performance from Bowling for Soup which saw fans give rapturous applause at the end of the night.

Just like high school, we hope Bowling for Soup never ends.

Megan Archer

By Megan Archer
Deputy Chief Reporter - @MeganA_Star

Deputy Chief Reporter with the Express & Star. Give me a call on 01902 319363 or email


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