Concert Review: Boxes Tour by Goo Goo Dolls

Here are five reasons why attending the concert of the Goo Goo Dolls was worth every cent

1 – The band released new material in 2016 but was not arrogant to admit that’s not enough to make a great show.

Many artists tend to focus on recent albums for reasons that can be justified – they have outgrown the songs they once recorded, mileage for the latest output determines longevity and secures their label deals, or simple reluctance to admit that they cannot replicate the quality music they used to generate.

No matter the reason, the Goo Goo Dolls concert felt like a greatest hits tour, bringing in the all-time favorites across albums, from their breakout track Name, to the most popular song ever heard in the history of US radio Iris, to new sentimental favorite Come to Me. It could’ve been a memorable show solely for the group but they made sure it was for everyone else.

2 – The 90s was a golden decade for music and they continue to represent why it was.

Twenty years back, the music landscape was strikingly different. There were no autotunes, technology played a minimal role in the creative process and collaborations were the exception, not the rule.

None of these have creeped in to the music of the band. It was about the vocals, the lyrics and the instrumentation. Changes are not necessarily bad. But watching a beautiful thing remain constant is reaffirming and satisfying.

3 – Unlike artists who capitalize on their public persona to drive music, the group never played that game. However, it did not prevent them from establishing personal connections with the audience.

No gimmicks, just songs. It almost bars appreciation when the connection is simply music. (I want to shoot myself for saying simply music as there can be no greater foundation of a relationship).

Having said that, John Rzeznik delivered great stories, and at times, funny ones. Most memorable was the tale of how Name came about. His wife was nagging him about getting a real life and he felt the pressure to deliver. It generated their first airplay hit. Years passed, the track is around but his wife isn’t anymore.

4 – Now that they are less popular and trendy, not a lot of individuals intent on simply riding the bandwagon showed up

The biggest injustice is having people who attend concerts solely to have stories put on their social media accounts and see what mileage it can bring their status. These sets of individuals deprive those who genuinely want to witness the inspiration of their lives belt it out and get mesmerized and hypnotized in the moment. Not to mention, their photo and video moments tend to block the view of people behind. In other words, posers and fakers ruin the experience.

I’m not saying the Goo Goo Dolls concert had none. But now that Slide and Here is Gone are radio hits of the past and Boxes and Magnetic have not been on the radar of the cool kids, you could see people beside you who were just as thrilled that they are seeing one of the 90s legends rock it out and sing the story of their lives.

5 – John Rzeznik might be the most popular but he’s not one to hoard the spotlight

One of my favorite moments during concerts is when the lead vocalist introduces the rest of his band to the audience. Not only because they deserve credit, but some don’t actually prefer the lead. (Although in this specific case, I still prefer John.)

Robby, the bassist and co-founding member of Rzeznik, was allowed to sing tracks, even though less mainstream, from past albums where he sang lead on. In no way did John intervene to make the moment his own.

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