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Feature: Alt Dialogue on Blink-182

It’s been an eventful few days in the Blink-182 universe. It’s confusing and full of accusations, comebacks and mudslinging. If you’ve been living under a rock since Monday here’s a concise summary of events. Tom DeLonge is on “indefinite hiatus” from Blink-182, allegedly telling the other members that he was “out” of recording the new album and touring through his manager via email. Note: He has explicitly said that he hasn’t quit the band. That left Mark Hoppus and Travis Barker in need of a guitarist and singer to honour commitments and they choose Matt Skiba of Alkaline Trio. Various interviews, “open letters” and social media posts have confused the situation with claims and counter claims.

What we do know is Tom is no longer in Blink 182 for the upcoming show(s) and the new album isn’t happening.

Alt Dialogue has followed events quite closely, 15 years ago we were huge Blink fans and as such it feels like you’re witnessing two old friends argue and bicker and end a friendship on Facebook. It’s sad. Not heartbreaking, just disappointing. You’d have been a fool to think that some kind of meltdown wasn’t going to happen, it has been widely rumoured that Blink have been a dysfunctional unit since they reformed.

All parties involved have said they’re proud of Blink “legacy”. Strange, as this whole episode is smearing it and making them look like fools. I’m sure there are plenty of hurt feelings, but these are grown men in their thirties that unable to go through a chapter of Blink history without coming out looking like 13 year old girls.

‘Enema Of The State’ and ‘Take Off Your Pants and Jacket’ were great albums that encapsulated the feeling of the late 90s and early 00s. Yes they were immature and childish in lyrical content (perhaps a pointer toward recent events), but looking back they have aged well and still sound as invigorating. I remember the excitement of listening to both albums for the first time and both are key markers of my late teenage years. ‘Blink-182’ in 2003 was the band growing up a little and marked the start of their first meltdown. It didn’t have the magic of the previous two or the infectious rawness of ‘Cheshire Cat’, ‘Dude Ranch’ or ‘Buddha’. You can’t underestimate that era of Blink had on people. They inspired a generation of kids to pick up guitars and start a band. Their brand pop-punk was exhilarating and nobody has come close to recreating it since.

Blink-182 should never have reformed. Their live shows have been substandard and ‘Neighborhoods’ was an album that promised so much but only ever hinted at delivery. The current situation is making a mockery of the career they had and the memories they made for so many people. Admittedly I have listened to Blink again since Monday and it’s been a timely reminder of how much I loved the bad. I’m excited to hear what Mark and Travis will sound like with Matt Skiba. I’m disappointed though, fading out would have been a far more gracious exit. You feel that no matter what Tom, Mark or Travis say you get the feeling that this could have all been resolved in house.

Forget what is happening and listen to the below.

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