Never an exercise in nostalgia, the Buzzcocks’ sold-out show at the Roxy on June 29th was fresh and exciting. Last year, the Manchester, England-based punk rockers celebrated their 40th anniversary. With no intention of slowing down soon, the band showed that they are still going hard and strong, performing with the full-tilt energy and stamina of musicians half their age. Their explosive performance onstage drew fans of literally all ages; the diverse and animated crowd were pumping in fists high into the air and passionately singing along to every number.
The Buzzcocks have an immense back catalog of hook-laden power pop material which have become timeless classics over the years. They are considered part of the Holy Trinity of punk rock, along with the Sex Pistols and the Clash. The Buzzcocks have been cited as a source of inspiration by artists as diverse as REM, Nirvana, and Green Day. They are also innovators of the independent record store scene and considered genuine punk rock superstars. The Buzzcocks have released eight albums, over 20 singles and EPs, several compilations, covers by other bands and have had their songs on film soundtracks and advertisements.
The current lineup of the Buzzcocks includes Pete Shelley (vocals, guitar), Steve Diggle (guitar, vocals), Chris Remington (bass), and Danny Farrant (drums). All have performed and recorded together since 2008. Extensive time together on the road and in the studio has paid off well, and the band performed an incredibly tight and high-octane show. The intense performance was a reflection of each band member’s unique personality, featuring rock star posing aplenty while bashing out power chords with an effective three-guitar attack. The beyond-belief dynamics of the rhythm section solidified the overall sound.
The impressively long set list was comprised of 22 songs. The show ended with two encores, driving the audience into a frenzy and fully demonstrating the fans’ adulation and appreciation for the band. Like conquering heroes, the Buzzcocks stood onstage for a few moments soaking up the thunderous applause from their devoted fans.