Saturday, August 8, 2020

Blink-182 brings back punk with live album

November 22, 2000

Blink-182

The Mark, Tom and Travis Show (The Enema Strikes Back)

(MCA)

Live albums are often the most definitive of a band’s career. They capture the essence of the band: the energy, emotion and intensity of a band’s live show.

Blink-182’s latest offering showcases this ability. “The Mark, Tom and Travis Show (The Enema Strikes Back)” manages to answer to all the critics who have been riding the band after the success of its 1999 release, “Enema of the State.” The critics have alleged the band has sold out, forgetting the punk rock of its previous sound.

On its live release, the band manages to capture the punk energy that had been lacking. Behind the break-neck speed drumming of Travis Barker, the band turns up the energy level. Bassist Mark Hoppus also manages to show more vocal range live than on studio recordings. The band manages to turn slower, poppier tunes, such as “Don’t Leave Me” and “Wendy Clear,” into songs that will get the kids jumping up and down.

The songs range from selections off Blink’s debut album, “Cheshire Cat,” to unreleased rants such as “Blew Job.” The set list also contains “Man Overboard,” a previously unreleased studio track recorded during the “Enema of the State” sessions.

An added bonus to the album is the onstage banter between Hoppus and guitarist Tom Delonge. The duo keeps a running commentary on topics such as oral sex, masturbation and dog semen. This comedy is what helps separate the album from other live offerings. The band members seem to genuinely enjoy themselves and keep a good rapport with the audience, as evidenced by the deafening cheers heard throughout the CD.

Blink fans and critics will enjoy this offering. The music returns to the band’s punk roots and manages to keep you laughing.

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