Photos & review by Jennie Book
The SAP Center in San Jose lit up on June 22, 2023 when iconic pop punk band Blink-182 took the stage for their highly anticipated reunion tour. Lasers and pyro shot from the stage, confetti fell from the rafters, and the arena glowed with the energy of 17,000 diehard fans.
Mark Hoppus, Travis Barker, and Tom Delonge were clearly having fun together onstage, bantering with the audience and each other with their irreverent humor and showing lots of cameraderie. Mark yelled “What’s up, Banana Guy?” to a guy dressed in a banana costume in the seats off stage right, and guaranteed that guy’s life was made. Their connection to the crowd was strong, and the crowd was totally devoted to the band. The guy in front of me with double-hands rock horns flying, singing every lyric, and a Blink tattoo on his arm was the norm rather than the exception.
Among the countless memorable moments of the night, fan favorite “I Miss You” resonated deeply with the audience. Fans sang every lyric and emotions ran high, but then got even higher right before “Adam’s Song,” when Mark Hoppus bravely shared his personal journey about a time in his life when he wasn’t sure he wanted to continue living, and then talked about his cancer diagnosis a few years ago when he wasn’t sure he’d get the chance to. We know that he’s fine now and rocking as hard as ever on stage, but his words struck a chord with the crowd and “Adam’s Song” turned into an emotional singalong.
Travis Barker, the drumming goat of the world, unleashed thunder all night long. Mid-set his drum platform ascended into the air so it hovered over the stage, and with spotlight on him he crushed his drumset, unleashing the unrelenting tour de force talent he’s known for.
Tom Delonge moved around the stage like an agile kid, swapping guitars every few songs, his voice in great form after so many years of keeping it in shape with the excellent band Angels & Airwaves.
For Blink-182 fans, this was an unforgettable night, a testament to the enduring impact of their decades of music. The three of them back together in a big arena, on a stage in front of a full house of fans made for a memorable night that the crowd will keep in their memory banks forever.
For up to date tour information, check out www.blink182.com for all the latest news.