Gig review: Angels & Airwaves, Glasgow ABC

THE side project of Blink-182 guitarist Tom DeLonge, California’s Angels & Airwaves present an alternative to his old band that’s at once a little more grown up and still steeped in a sense of adolescent melodrama.

The set spanned early singles The Adventurer and It Hurts through to representative samples of the recent two-album multimedia diptych Love and Love: Part Two, with the group churning out a fiercely loud and expertly played torrent of smooth-edged rock riffs.

In the modestly-sized but packed-full ABC, the high values of the production were right up there on stage, including a blazing bank of lights behind the band that often rendered them as mere silhouettes, instead bathing the crowd and their air-pumping fists in an atmospheric glow.

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Their lyrics are filled with the kinds of superlative emotional declarations that work best when aimed at a youthful market, but DeLonge does single-minded and heartfelt well. Between the main set closer Secret Crowds bleeding away and the tender, piano-led affirmations of All That We Are kicking in again, a robotic voice requested the crowd take away one simple truth: “always remember that you were not alone / and you have felt something that thousands of others have felt.”

The War was a suitably triumphant closer, with DeLonge’s fist-clenched salutes to the crowd when the music was over suggesting he knew they understood.

Rating: ***