The Offspring Let the Good Times Roll with Sum 41 and Simple Plan

The Offspring are currently out on tour with Sum 41 and Simple Plan, as they continue to support in their 2021 album, ‘Let the Bad Times Roll.’ To get right to my takeaway from the show, this tour package is awesome! It’s been about six years since I’ve seen both The Offspring or Sum 41, and I don’t believe I’ve ever caught Simple Plan live before. If I had the chance, I’d follow this tour all summer.

On this particular occasion, I was able to bring my thirteen-year-old son along with me to check out a few of the bands that I grew up with (in the case of The Offspring) or played heavily in my 20’s (Sum 41). The tour rolled through Western New York when they performed at Darien Lake on August 20th. As aparent, this always begins the looming question as to whether the next generation will embrace my music or be left wondering what the big deal was.All doubts were quickly put to rest when we caught up during Simple Plan’s set and it was clear he was enjoying the evening. Simple Plan kicked off their set with“I’d Do Anything,” immediately followed up with “Shut Up!” and “Jump” to get the crowd fired up early. Admittedly, I wasn’t an active Simple Planlistener, but, like most in the crowd, I was familiar with almost every song they played due to the high volume of radio play they’ve received over the years. They closed out a fantastic set and set the tone for a memorable evening of pop-punk anthems.

Simple Plan's Pierre Bouvier takes flight in Buffalo, NY

Sum 41 was up next. Earlier this year, they announced that they were finishing up work on a final(double) album, which will be followed by a world tour and a disbandment of the band. To my knowledge, there were no explicit reasons given for the eventual breakup, but if their performance on this night was any indication of where this band is, I’d have to imagine they’ll but some serious consideration into revising those plans. The pop-punk scene is seeing a huge resurgence and this band shows no signs of slowing down. They began this evening’s set with “Motivation” off their debut album ‘All Killer No Filler.” The next pair of songs came off of one of my favorite releases (2002’s ‘Does This Look Infected?’) “The Hell Song” and“Over My Head (Better Off Dead).” By this point, the crowd was wound up. The pop-punk vibe that Simple Plan had set earlier in the evening had taken a turn for the heavier, thrashier sound and the fans were there for every moment of it! Again, I connected with my son who was clearly loving what he was hearing so far, the smile stretching from ear to ear. The set continued with hits including “We’re All to Blame,” “In Too Deep” and “Fat Lip” before concluding with “Still Waiting.

Sum 41's Deryck Whibley captivates the crowd at Darien Lake

Separate from the performance itself, it feels so good to see this band playing live and captivating audiences again. I first caught them back in 2004, when they played with Good Charlotte on the ‘Chuck’tour and was totally blown away! I know the band went through a bit of a lull in the late 2000’s and early 2010’s, but they are back every bit as strong as they were in their early days. Don’t sleep on these guys. If their current and upcoming tours are in fact their last, I’ll be glad to say I was there! Finally, The Offspring were set to take the stage. This band exploded in late 1994 when I was a freshman in high school. As a fan of primarily heavy metal music, TheOffspring was easily one of the biggest exceptions in my cd wallet growing up. I spun every album through ‘Conspiracy of One’ without ever skipping a track. Even beyond that, I’ve enjoyed every release and always look forward to the change to catch this band live (though it’s only been a handful of times over the years).

There’s always been something about the combination of angst, comedy, self-deprecating nihilism and aggression in their music that’s resonated with me more than almost any other band I’ve listened to over the years. I was especially excited to share this band with my son.

The Offspring headlined the 'Let the Bad Times Roll' tour as it rolled though Western, NY

The Offspring took the stage at 9:30 sharp and wasted no time jumping into the classics, opening up with “Come Out and Play,” immediately followed by “All I Want.” As the evening progressed, they continued to crank out the hits. At this particular show, they premiered “Hassan Chop” from ‘Let the Bad Times Roll,’ giving the local crowd a little something extra.

With any band that grows out of the club scene, there’s inevitably going to be some criticism when their live show expands. The Offspring are no strangers to this. Their stage production is huge and impressive. The band itself has grown beyond the original four piece, with only vocalist/guitarist Dexter Holland and guitarist Noodles being original members. While I understand the argument, it’s simply not warranted here. These guys have worked incredibly hard over the years and continue to bring relevant music to their fans. They outgrew the clubs decades ago and packed the amphitheater at Darien Lake with what looked like close to 15,000 fans. All of that to say, this band still kicks ass. Go and enjoy the show and“Let the Good Times Roll!”

The Offspring Setlist:

1.Come Out and Play

2.All I Want

3.Want You Bad

4.Let the Bad Times Roll

5.Staring at the Sun

6.Original Prankster

7.Hassan Chop (Live debut)


9.Bad Habit

10.Iron Man/The Trooper/ Sweet Child O’ Mine/ In the Hall of the Mountain King (medley)

11.Blitzkrieg Bop (Ramones cover)

12.Gotta Get Away

13.Gone Away

14.Why Don’t You Geta Job?

15.(Can’t Get My) Head Around You

16.Pretty Fly (For a White Guy)

17.The Kids Aren’t Alright


18.You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid

19.Self Esteem