They were arguably the most successful alternative rock band of the 1990’s. They’ve sold more than 12 million records around the world, and hit song “Iris” managed to remain at the head of Billboard charts for an unprecedented 12 straight months in 2012. It’s easy to see why they were so well received. In an era of teenage angst and rebellion fuelled by the likes of Blink 182, Sum 41, Simple Plan and the All American Rejects, The Goo Goo Dolls acted as a shining beacon of acceptance. There is a remarkable innocence in the content of their songs, and a wonderful hopefulness in their lyrics. You can go back through different songs, “I’m Alive,” “Iris,” “Dizzy,” to name a few, and they all maintain the common theme of vulnerability. Iconic lyrics like “When everything’s meant to be broken, I just want you to know who I am,” I’ll be better when I’m older, I’ll be the greatest fan of your life,” “I’ll be kind, if you’ll be faithful, you be sweet and I’ll be grateful” were a welcome positive voice to my early years.
I was lucky enough to have been surprised with free tickets to their concert on August 9th at the Molson Amphitheatre in Toronto, and for all their years of playing, their sound is still as fresh as ever.
The alternative rock band sensation opened with “Over and Over”, and I’ll admit that it put me in slightly emotional, ready to party kind of mood. Robby Takac jumped around seeming especially exuberant on stage, creating a palpable excitement for those in attendance at the concert.
To give you an idea of how great they sounded, when smash hit “Iris” was played, I’m pretty sure the girl next to me started crying.
While I was a little bit saddened that I wasn’t going to be hearing my favorite song by The Goo Goo Dolls, “I’ll Be Your Crying Shoulder,” The Goo Goo Dolls concluded the concert with “It’s A Long Way Home”, a song from their latest album, Boxes.