Pop Punk revelry with Blink 182 & All time Low at ‘When We Were Young’ festival

When We Were Young boasts characteristically stacked line-up for third year running

The pop-punk-oriented When We Were Young, held over this past weekend, is an annual quintessence of millennial nostalgia.

The festival’s 2022 iteration, head-lined by Paramore and My Chemical Romance, left a high bar to cross – but was undoubtedly matched with this year’s stellar set of acts, head-lined by the scene-defining Green Day and Blink-182. 

when we were young

Blink-182’s appearance follows the release of their ninth studio album One More Time…, their first since 2011’s Neighborhoods to feature band co-founder Tom DeLonge. Maryland rockers All Time Low also showcased new material this weekend, being joined by surprise guest Avril Lavigne to promote their collaborative single “Fake As Hell”.

As such a beloved figure of the scene – especially to younger fans carrying the pop-punk torch – Lavigne’s appearance was met with considerable excitement on the grounds as well as online. The performance featured a rendition of Lavigne’s own “Sk8er Boi”. 

While All Time Low prepare to tour Australia this November, the band found ample Aussie company at When We Were Young this year, the set-list of which included a couple of our biggest pop-rock exports.

The Las Vegas Festival Grounds were graced by The Veronicas this weekend, who preceded Michelle Branch on the festival’s Stripe Stage. The Veronicas made their When We Were Young debut within a day of announcing Gothic Summer – their forthcoming album – on Friday, which was paired with the release of lead single “Perfect.”

Taking to the Green Stage were Sydney boy-band 5 Seconds of Summer, whose pop-punk pasticcio “She Looks So Perfect” broke them into the mainstream just under a decade ago.

Their appearance at When We Were Young marked the end of the band’s 2023 world tour, and found them caught between Yellowcard and Sum 41 on the set-list. 

If there’s one thing that the success of When We Were Young indicates, it’s that the collective spirit of pop-punk, emo, and the broader scene is immortal.

Pop charts suggest a cultural confinement to the millennium’s premiere decade, but the fervency of fans is persistent as ever before.

Over the course of February 2024, Blink-182 are set to play fifteen shows across Australia. You can book tickets for the band’s Australia/New Zealand tour here

Words by Harrison Jones.