Blink-182 took to stage for the very first time without the participation of their longtime pal Tom Delonge at the Roxy in LA on March 18th, 2015. DeLonge was replaced by Alkaline Trio singer Matt Skiba, who also performed with the band in San Diego on March 20th and Musink Fest on March 22nd. Mark Hoppus introduced Matt Skiba to the crowd saying he is new in the band and he loves all the fans so much.
We all know DeLonge had been putting off working on a new album with Blink-182 for a while now and according to his bandmates he eventually stated in an email that he didn’t want to participate in any Blink-182 projects “indefinitely”. Instead, he wanted to focus on his other musical and non-musical endeavors and take a bit of a hiatus. Blink-182 had already committed to playing several festivals such as Musink Fest, so Matt Skiba filled in for DeLonge.
The first show at the Roxy kicked off with "Feeling This" from their 2003 self-titled album. This marked the first of many hits to be performed that night including "The Rock Show", "First Date", "Man Overboard", "All The Small Things" and "I Miss You". The show was not covered by any media house and no photo passes were allowed. However, most of the fans captured some nice moments and uploaded photos and a few clips on YouTube. Other songs the show covered include Misfit's "Skulls" and for the first time since 2004 "Wendy Clear". The encore carried the songs "Violence", "Dammit" and "Family Reunion".
Skiba continued to rock out with the band across all 3 shows as if he had always been part of the band. He did very well, bringing plenty of panache to the performance and claiming the stage as his own. Travis Barker spoke very highly of his performance, stating that he was “awesome” and that he appreciated Skiba was "stoked to be playing".
In an interview, Skiba said Blink-182 felt like home. He admits that his guitar playing style is different from Delonge's and he had to learn his style so as to fit in. He also had to learn quite a few songs ahead of Musink Festival and throughout March many pictures were posted of the band rehearsing.
As for more shows with Matt Skiba as Blink's second frontman, the future isn’t clear at the moment. He will be touring with Alkaline Trio later this year and Blink-182 are yet to schedule any more shows. We'll have to wait and see whether Skiba is going to offer a helping hand on any future shows.
Travis Barker has mentioned that he would be interested in recording an album with Skiba at some point, only time will tell.
But keep an eye out, you never know when Blink-182 might announce another surprise show. Also, let us know what you thought of Skiba playing with the band.