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goodcharlotte_cologne2019Palladium, Cologne, Germany
5th February 2019
Good Charlotte - “Generation RX 2019” European Tour - Special guests: Sleeping With Sirens, Boston Manor, The Dose

For more than two decades, quintet GOOD CHARLOTTE has been known as the spearhead of the American Pop Punk movement. These five guys from Waldorf, Maryland are not only co-founders of this particular genre, who domesticated the punk for the mainstream radio, together with GREEN DAY and THE OFFSPRING, they are also among the most successful formations that have ever emerged from this genre.

A few days ago, the band visited Cologne. You might wonder why we again have no pictures of the evening. Well, yet there was another band, called GOOD CHARLOTTE, who presented a contract you simply could not sign as a member of the free press. The conditions were not acceptable for our photographer… like so often in the past especially with bands from USA.

The Dose

Noise Rock formation THE DOSE from Los Angeles were the first band on today’s extensive roster of a total of four bands. Vocalist/ guitarist Indio Downey and drummer Ralph Alexander joined the seemingly growing roster of rock bands sporting only two members. THE DOSE have been at it since their 2016 release of a self-titled debut EP. /

Music & Performance
Exactly on time at 6:35pm, the two musicians from California entered the stage and greeted the audience with a simple “Hey, we’re THE DOSE”. In terms of music, it became clear very quickly where the duo gets their inspiration from: the roaring Noise Rock from the 90ies. The reminiscences were completed by Singer Indio Downey wearing a signature black-red-checked flannel shirt, and drummer Ralph Alexander (who also operates the bass synth pedals) sporting a RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS sleeveless shirt. Even Indio’s voice sounded very Cobain-ish at times. However, no one wreaked havoc on stage. Quite on the contrary, the set-up felt rather static. The only stunt Indio pulled was to climb onto his Orange guitar cabinet and jumping from it in the middle of a song, which felt a little out of context. Music like this belongs into a small club, but in a large venue like the Palladium in front of (at this time) only a few people, a lot of the energy was lost. After the end of their 25-minute set, THE DOSE left the stage without any further words, but not without receiving polite applause.

Music: 7
Performance: 7
Sound: 6
Light: 6
Total: 6.5 / 10

Boston Manor

Blackpool’s finest in Punk, BOSTON MANOR, came on second. The quintet from the UK was founded in 2013 and has stirred things up with their two released albums (‘Be Nothing’ in 2016 and ‘Welcome to the Neighborhood’ in 2018). /

Music & Performance
The stage break was really super quick, so ten minutes later, the five members of BOSTON MANOR stormed on stage, forming quite a contrast. Singer Henry Cox really tried to fire up the audience, which fortunately had swollen in the meantime to a few hundred people. Despite their relatively young age, the band showed some real cohesion. Especially their latest single ‘Bad Machine’ seemed to stick with the audience, as more and more people followed Henry’s instructions to “lose their shit and dance”. However, sometimes Henry seemed to focus a little too much on the stage action to the expense of his vocal qualities, but that can be taken as a sign for their unbridled ambition.

01. Flowers In Your Dustbin
02. England's Dreaming
03. Funeral Party
04. Bad Machine
05. FY1 / Stick Up
06. Laika
07. Halo

Music: 8
Performance: 7
Sound: 7
Light: 6
Total: 7 / 10

Sleeping With Sirens

Post Hardcore band SLEEPING WITH SIRENS from Orlando, Florida occupied the “very special guest” slot on that night’s billing. The band has released five studio albums since their foundation in 2009. Their most recent album from 2017 is called ‘Gossip’. /

Music & Performance
In the meantime, many more people had arrived, and the Palladium was around half full. At 8pm, a headliner-worthy intro came on and the band started with the song ‘Do It Now Remember It Later’ from their 2011 album ‘Sleeping with Sirens’. From the first moments it became clear that the level of professionalism of SLEEPING WITH SIRENS was in a whole different ballpark. Singer Kellin Quinn’s voice really stood out in terms of clarity, and also his band members provided the musical foundation very close to the recorded original. But also the action in front of the stage was turned up a notch. The band initiated the first “wall of death” of the evening, and things started to warm up considerably. Kellin used his stage presence in a break before the song ‘Better Off Dead’ to draw attention to the dangers of mental illness and encouraged everyone to support each other and get professional help. The gig ended after 45 minutes, and people were more than ready for the main act of the evening.

01. Do It Now Remember It Later
02. Here We Go
03. Empire to Ashes
04. Better Off Dead
05. We Like It Loud
06. Go Go Go
07. Congratulations
08. If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn
09. If You Can’t Hang
10. Kick Me

Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 8
Light: 7
Total: 7.8 / 10

Good Charlotte

Over 11 million albums sold worldwide and numerous awards, including a Kerrang! Award, various MTV Awards and MuchMusic as well as NRJ Music Awards, prove GOOD CHARLOTTE’s exceptional position. Even their five-year long break could not affect their international success, as their 2016 album ‘Youth Authority’ immediately rose again high in the charts worldwide. In autumn last year, their seventh album, ‘Generation Rx’, was released, and the band kicked off an extended world tour, leading them also to Cologne. /

Music & Performance
The stage break took a little longer than expected, so around 9:15pm the room lights were dimmed, and the introductory notes of the song ‘Generation Rx’ from the same-titled album resounded over the speakers while the band members entered the stage. At last singer Joel Madden appeared on stage and performed the song together with the band, fading over into the albums second track ‘Self Help’. While the first two tracks were received with excitement, GOOD CHARLOTTE got the party started with ‘The Anthem’ from their 2002 album ‘The Young and the Hopeless’, which really got the crowd moving.

Generally, the Cologne crowd demonstrated their appetite for sing-along passages and their text knowledge, which was positively acknowledged by the band, as Joel reiterated approximately a thousand times how much GOOD CHARLOTTE liked to be in Germany. On top of the music, the stage production also featured a massive light show, as well as gimmicks such as CO2-cannons, as well as giant sparklers, which illuminated the whole stage. For ‘The River’ the band treated their German fans to an alternate ending, which tested RAMMSTEIN’s ‘Du Hast’. The 19-song set ended after a little under 90 minutes with the two biggest hits of the band ‘I Just Wanna Live’ and ‘Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous’, which hopefully cured any appetite for nostalgia the audience might have had.

01. Generation Rx
02. Self Help
03. The Anthem
04. The Story of My Old Man
05. Keep Your Hands Off My Girl
06. Girls & Boys
07. Life Changes
08. Actual Pain
09. Shadowboxer
10. Predictable
11. Prayers
12. Hold On
13. WaldorfWorldwide
14. Little Things
15. The Young and the Hopeless
16. The River
17. Dance Floor Anthem
18. I Just Wanna Live
19. Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous

Music: 8
Performance: 7
Sound: 8
Light: 7
Total: 7.5 / 10

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