Hecklers get to Gob

By Chris Tihor

Apparently Gob’s attempted transition from independent punk band to major label rock stars hasn’t been quite as smooth as they had hoped.

Their March 24 show appeared to start out on a good note as the sold-out crowd packed the MacEwan Hall Ballroom. Gob’s usual crowd of dyed-hair kids decked out in punk band t-shirts had been replaced by a whole new group armed with name-brand clothing and cell phones.

Gob–headlining the "Going Ape Shite" tour, and promoting their latest album, The World According to Gob–returned to Calgary for the third time since Halloween. Starting out their set with two songs off their 1998 release, "How Far Shallow Takes You" one would expect long time fans to be pleased. However, it only took four songs for the heckling to start.

"Fucking sellouts!" screamed an ex-fan at the front, a comment which visibly upset the band–who seemed both surprised and embarrassed.

Not to be deterred, Gob battled on and should be given credit for their energetic stage show. Unfortunately, even this didn’t go right as vocalist/guitarist Tom Thacker accidentally disappeared off the side of the stage after a running slide.

Gob did satisfy some of their new fans by singing new songs such as the radio regular "I Here You Calling." But even this wasn’t enough to get the group called back out for an encore, which almost always happens at MacEwan Hall punk shows.

There just wasn’t the atmosphere normally experienced at shows; it seemed the whole night something was missing. Maybe it was just an off night for Gob, or maybe the band still has a long way to go before becoming the band they want to be.

Another disappointment was that pop-punk band Bigwig did not perform after failing to make it past the Canadian border police. Their place was taken by Vancouver’s Complete who had half the crowd cheering them on. The other half of the crowd wasn’t quite sure if they should like Complete, as this band isn’t a MuchMusic regular.

Next up was Dallas’ Bowling For Soup who unfortunately did make it across the border. Bowling For Soup unsuccessfully tries to follow the footsteps of several other pop-punk bands. Every song was a feeble attempt to sound like MxPx, and every joke they made was made about sex or masturbation–a topic already exhausted by Blink-182.

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