We The Kings
We The Kings arrived late on stage, which was explained to the crowd by a crew member as “their intro isn’t working”. This didn’t quite sit right with the impatient crowd, but luckily the delay was only around ten minutes or so. The American pop rockers opened with a classic— ‘Check Yes Juliet’, and then continued to churn out the hits for the nostalgic audience including ‘Say You Like Me’ and ‘She Takes Me High’. The set was quite noticeably cut short considering We The Kings’ relative fame, but they managed to work with the short time that they did have and make it an enjoyable experience for all.
A cover of ‘The Middle’ by Jimmy Eat World went down a treat, following an anecdote from lead singer Travis Clark about when he saw them, plus Blink-182 and Green Day, as a teenager. The most memorable part of the set however had to be its finale, when the band played ‘Check Yes Juliet’. Indeed, they played it both to open and close. 6/10 MC
If you’re looking for a band who puts their fans first always, look no further than The Maine. The Arizona five-piece are quite well known for the way they go out of their way for those that follow them, which is no double attributable to their down-to-earth humility. Their last three albums, which are arguably their best, have all been put out through their own management company, 8123, and therefore without a record label. Their festivals sets are strikingly different from what they might do headlining their own show, bringing the energy to level 10 by reworking songs to get people dancing. At Slam Dunk North, lead singer John O’Callaghan, clad in a leopard print suit, did not rest until every single person watching was getting involved.
As expected, The Maine offered a few tracks from their most recent release, Lovely Little Lonely, but threw in a few surprises including fan favourite ‘My Heroine’, and ‘Girls Do What They Want’, during which O’Callaghan pulled a guy up on stage who didn’t know the lyrics but tried his best anyway. 8/10 MC
Cute Is What We Aim For
Cute Is What We Aim For were the band that, back in 2007, you were probably straightening your fringe to. Last year they celebrated the tenth anniversary of their debut album, The Same Old Blood Rush With A New Touch, and their performances at this year’s Slam Dunk Festival saw them play the album in full to give the UK a blast from the past.
The songs that received the most crowd participation were the obvious— singles ‘There’s A Class For This’, ‘Newport Living’ and, of course, ‘The Curse of Curves’, which pretty much everyone in the English-speaking world is familiar with. While listlessness might be expected from a band of twelve years, Cute Is What We Aim For were rather impressive with their liveliness and high level of interaction with the crowd before them. Whether you were a diehard fan or just a former emo looking to catch a glimpse of the good old days, Cute Is What We Aim For had you covered. 7/10 MC
Reviews by: Madison Convey