Best Show Ever: The Front Bottoms (Reading Festival 2018)


Every single The Front Bottoms show I have ever been to has been a standout and a show I will never forget. However, the show of theirs to top the list has to be their set at Reading & Leeds Festival 2018. As a die hard The Front Bottoms fan who has made sure to see them on their first and last date of their UK tour of the same year, I can assure you I have spent way too much money on this band. Despite this, every single show is different and evokes a different emotion. This show provoked heartbreak and pain, the two emotions that shockingly make for the best concert experience. Before I get started on why this show was amazing here is a screenshot of me at their performance.

This photo itself shows all my emotions – I am having the time of my life, but everything The Front Bottoms perform I feel. When they performed ‘Grand Finale’ which is a song about losing something important, that be a relationship, friendships or the transition to university, or losing yourself, or all emotions combined, it’s a song we all find a way to relate to. This song though not being their saddest is the one the evokes the most amount of emotion, it discusses drinking to forget but drinking to feel a feeling you have forgotten. It is truly heart-breaking and creates a sense of comfort knowing a huge crowd reinstate with this exact feeling.

As soon as ‘The Beers’ plays you know you are in for a great show, its such an amazing song with a deep undertone. As Brian Sella sings “And I will remember that summer, as the summer I was taking steroids, because you like a man with muscles and I like you”, it is clear this is going to be the best show of your life. The song is about losing yourself and putting yourself in danger to someone who has a hold on you. Its deep but no one in the crowd is crying, we are all dancing and singing along to a song we will understand. Moshing away our emotions as we realise we are all as messed up as each other.

The best thing about a The Front Bottoms show is their humour but their ability to make a deep feeling something to laugh and enjoy. The heartbreak you feel at the beginning is swept away amongst the indie folk sounds and Brian’s beautifully imperfect voice. The final song of every set is ‘Twin Size Mattress’, a story about a friendship destroyed by addiction, but again, despite the deep sentiment we are all dancing, jumping and moshing as Sella screams “And my nightmares will have nightmares every night”.

The Front Bottoms are my favourite band of all time, seeing them live makes me know that I am not alone. For those who haven’t seen them, they are an indie folk band merging pop punk undertones with an aggressive acoustic guitar and make you somehow want to tear a crowd apart. If you haven’t seen them, you should!


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Editor 2020/21 and a History student with a Britney Spears addiction.

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