Date: April 18th 2016
Venue: The Craufurd Arms, Milton Keynes
Support: Boy Jumps Ship / Robert And The Wamble Bambles
In a world of generic new-wave pop-punk, it’s refreshing to have a band like Patent Pending around to lighten the mood with their eccentric and childish behaviour. The New York band have continued an era of Bowling For Soup and Blink 182 when we live in one with baggy t-shirts and pizza snapbacks, and they’re finally looking at some prolonged success after latest LP ‘Riots Heart Rebellion’ dropped last year. This latest run of dates in bigger venues shows the draw that Patent Pending are starting to command.
Keeping it within the family, PP singer Joe Ragosta‘s brother, Robert, opens the show under the pseudonym Robert And The Wamble Bambles , despite being the sole member on stage tonight. Robert is the man behind the merch stand for the tour, but is clearly over the moon to warm the crowd up in Milton Keynes tonight, after admitting he had hardly touched a guitar in weeks. ‘Chronological Disabilities’ and ‘Zapoy’ reflect the charming nature of the singer-guitarist who gets a respectfully warm reception from the crowd.
The sneaky Boy Jumps Ship  are up to no good as some of the PP fans look bewildered during ‘Lost & Found’ because the Geordie boys have dressed up like the headliners, and frontman Si Todd even has the trademark black and white hair to go along with it. The unapologetically generic ‘Turn Up The Radio’ quashes all uncertainties as Joe Ragosta joins the stage to take over vocals while Todd spends some time riding on the sea of hands waving on. The band take a break from promoting their new material to play ‘Call To Arms’, but the rockier riff of closer ‘Burn’ gives a better indication of what upcoming album ‘Wake Up’ will sound like. BJS are harmlessly decent, and their personal enjoyment transcends on to the crowd.
The Survivor hit ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ blares out of the speakers as Patent Pending  take their positions centre stage before diving into ‘We’re Freakin’ Out (Map To Tahiti)’ and ‘Dance ’til We Die’ mixed in with some anecdotes about them being the “most annoying people in the world”. Despite their claims, they prove their friends in the industry with their co-written track with Zebrahead‘s own Matty Lewis (‘Love Is Anarchy’) and ‘Psycho In Love’ taken from their Bowling For Soup split ‘One Big Happy’, with a large majority of the crowd admitting they first heard of the band through the Texas pop-punk legends.
There’s no stopping the energy tonight, as brother Robert is back for a swim-off through the fans, but Joe takes gold and squares up the tally for the tour, as the band continue to include everyone in the venue tonight.
After several requests/threats from the room, the band concede and play ‘Six Feet’ to induce a mass sing-a-long, and thus confirm the success of ‘Riots Heart Rebellion’. Yet, there’s still much love for ‘Shake Weights And Moving Crates’, and the necessary props that come with it. An almost obligatory speech on chasing your dreams and being the person you aspire to be fits the mood conveniently for ‘One Less Heart To Break’, but thankfully seminal hit ‘Douchebag’ brings the sugar fuelled set to a worthy end.
Pop-punk may have gone off-piste in the last 5 years or so, but Patent Pending are flying the flag for silly, fun melodies, and songs unnecessarily about pirates. Pop-punk is not dead, but you might have to search a little bit harder than you used to.
Written by Mike Heath (@MikeBeef)