A first for The Offspring, Rockford

Having just released their newest album in four years, The Offspring has been pretty busy this summer between putting out Days Go By and embarking on a tour spanning the globe. Though, after all their years touring, their appearance at On The Waterfront would be The Offspring’s first ever performance in Rockford, IL.

Although playing a few U.S. dates over the summer, The Offspring officially launched their 2012 North American tour headlining Thursday night of Rockford’s On The Waterfront festival. Taking the stage for a good-sized crowd of a few thousand people, The Offspring didn’t look very enthused, and rightfully so.

The Offspring are used to an open pit filled with people all the way up to the barrier of the stage. Not the case at On The Waterfront. In front of the GA section was a reserved section for people willing to pay extra for tickets. “How about everyone from up front go grab a friend from the back!” vocalist Dexter Holland shouted after a few songs into their set. I just don’t think he was really having the whole reserved section since there wasn’t very much going on.

Dexter sounded extremely good and was able to belt out lyrics with the same rasp and punch as in years passed. Taking a quick break between songs Dexter mentioned that this was The Offspring’s first time playing in Rockford, IL. Noodles chimed in with “Cheap Trick is from here, this is like Mecca!”

Although I thought The Offspring performed very well, there were a few issues that marred their set. Sound issues after the second song were somewhat of a recurring event throughout the rest of the night. For whatever reason sound techs just couldn’t keep it balanced and Dexter’s vocals would fade in and out for no reason; same with Noddles’ guitars. But this isn’t The Offspring’s fault.

After about the sixth song you could tell Dexter was getting a little frustrated with Rockford’s crowd. “Seriously you guys up from here, c’mon, get a little closer.” He just wasn’t feeling the energy from the reserved section, and even the rear lawn section. The crowd in Rockford was less then entertaining and most of them just stood there like zombies bobbing their heads. The Offspring still carried on and put as much into their performance as possible.

The Offspring is more of a GA pit type of band. They like people moving and crowd surfing. Their fast paced songs and punk roots just demand unrest at their shows and this is something that Rockford fans didn’t get. Later in the show a few fans were really getting into it with The Offspring, but overall the crowd was very disappointing, especially in comparison to the great rock show going on in front of them.

The Offspring’s seasoned punk rock sound is something that has met a lot of success through the 90’s and early 2000’s. Personally, I enjoy their punk rock sound more than any other band like them. It’s so simple, yet it kicks so much ass. Don’t let the Rockford show be something that should reflect poorly on The Offspring. There was nothing wrong with the way they were playing; they were at the top of their game.

Their new music is pretty notable as well. It mixes seamlessly with “the original” Offspring and doesn’t stick out like something that shouldn’t be there. The Offspring found their sound, it has worked for them, and they’re sticking with it. Some people might say they only like their early stuff from back in the early 90’s, but truth is most of what they’ve released has stayed true to the sound and feel that has drawn so many fans over the years.

Check out the rest of The Offspring’s massive tour here.


Check out my album review of Days Go By here.

2 Responses to “A first for The Offspring, Rockford”
  1. Suzy says:

    Wow, I was there- in the front row and could not disagree more with this. The crowd was ecstatic and the band was MUCH more energetic than they were a month earlier in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I do agree they are more of the General Admission type, they still rocked it and everyone had fun. Maybe because I was in the front row I didn’t even notice the sound problems. But whatever. Great pics, anyway.

    • Nick Semrad says:

      Yeah the sound was fantastic in the front row, but I didn’t think the crowd was as good as they could’ve been. Most of the people in the Lawn section were just standing there and a lot of the show the same went for reserved. In the front row of course the crowd was a little better, but aside from that I didn’t see much going on.

      Thanks for checking out the article and photos!

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