Papa Roach - Manchester Academy - 4.2.01

Papa Roach are yet to release their first single "The Last Resort" over here in the UK. Tonight there are over 2000 paying punters crammed into the Academy. I guess it just goes to show you the power of the media and the MTV video culture that surrounds us because the truth is that Papa Roach just aren't that good. With a support band like Hed(PE) on before them it only goes to highlight this. Coby Dick and co just don't have the stage presence that even the most dodgy pub band have. This doesn't matter though for the predominantly teenage audience. Could someone explain to me why it is that Rock music (the most ugly and violent of the musical field) attracts the most beautiful people? Hordes of teenage girls and boys that could have walked off a catwalk or Aussie soap mix amongst the admittedly hideous 30-40 year olds. Its another case for the Eerie Indiana kids (Episode 258: Why do Rock fans turn from Beauty to the Beast once they reach 25?).

On the stage Coby Dick shouts out typical macho rock slogans ("Its not about us, its about the energy from you guys", "Anyone who's got a joint light it up in the air"). It just looses its feeling in Manchester where if they walked the toughest streets they would simply be crushed before their ego's got hold of them. Musically, its just dumb ass jock rock which has no place either side of the atlantic. Rock music used to be about the outsider and now we get a generation of rock bands (Papa Roach, Limp Bizkit etc.) who just appeal to the townie / trendy generation. The type of people who ironically used to beat up the kids for being freaky goths.

You've all heard "The Last Resort" single by now and quite possibly seen the video. That is all you need to see of the band as the live show is simply the same song repeated for an hour. Coby, I don't care whether you wet the bed or not - keep you bland variant of rock to yourselves and fuck off to Middle America. Hed(PE) on the other hand are welcome to come over here when ever they damn well like.

Alex McCann