NOFX fans packed The Town Ballroom in Buffalo Thursday night, many of them younger than the twenty-five year old band.
Fans sported facial piercings and black clothing and hairstyles ranging from mohawks or spikes to the classic emo bowl-cut.
Ontario punkers Ceremonial Snips opened the sold-out show followed by The Toronto-based Flatliners. The Flatliners signed last year with Fat Wreck Chords, the independent punk label founded by Mike Burkett of NOFX in 1991.
Chris Cresswell, The Flatliner’s lead man on guitar, performed as the crowd erupted into an awkward mix of skanking and slam dancing, some skank dancers shuffling off after a few slams too many.
Cresswell, backed by Scott Brigham on guitar, John Darbey on bass and Paul Ramirez on drums, spoke about a recent trip home to Toronto. After a brief stop at a local Tim Horton’s, the band headed to the border where they were pulled over by customs for inspection, “They didn’t find any drugs,” said Cresswell, “but their dog ate Jon’s bagel.”
Minnesota-based Dillinger Four appeared next. Vocalist Patrick Costello did everything he could to keep the audience’s attention, from fellating the microphone to invoking the name of Joe the Plumber, but the crowd began chanting “NOFX” only fifteen minutes into the Dillinger Four performance.
Band mates Erik Funk and Bill Morrisette on guitar and vocals, and drummer Lane Pederson also shared the stage.
Much of the audience remained in Town’s bar during the set, watching the Buffalo Sabres defeat the band’s home team Minnesota Wild on the big screen.
Security was beefed up considerably before NOFX took the stage. A total of seven bouncers lined the barrier, prepared for the enthusiastic crowd surfers who lunged for the stage.
NOFX Front man and Fat Mike (Mike Burkett) joked that guitarist “El Hefe likes playing here even better than selling oranges” but he was “lonely because there are no Mexicans” in Buffalo.
The band, including founding member Eric Melvin on guitar and drummer Erik Sandin, played a mix from their considerable play list featuring both older music and songs from their latest CD, released in November 2007, “They’ve Actually Gotten Worse Live”.
NOFX next heads to Baltimore and Richmond before beginning their European tour.
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