Boys Like Girls live at 'Not Just A Phase Fest' review: Still unmatched

Boys Like Girls returned to Kansas City for the first time in over a decade to perform in the city's annual 'Not Just A Phase Fest.'
Boys Like Girls perform in concert
Boys Like Girls perform in concert / Miikka Skaffari/GettyImages

Performing in Kansas City, Kansas, for the first time since 2012, Boys Like Girls returned for the annual Not Just A Phase Fest. The group was one of seven bands to perform on the night, playing in the second to last slot, as the festival ended its night with Yellowcard.

The group performed for just under an hour. In that time frame, the group encapsulated everything it means to be a rock band

Focusing on solo projects, the band took a long hiatus during the late 2010s before announcing a world tour in late 2019. This tour would then be pushed back until 2022 due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The group would go on to release 2023’s SUNDAY AT FOXWOODS, its first album since 2012.

Boys Like Girls’ showmanship proved to be unmatched as the band put on the performance of a lifetime

Boys Like Girls came out in style, literally. Decked out in leather clothing, bandanas, tons of jewelry, and plenty of guitar picks, the group depicted exactly what a modern-day rock band looks like.

Opening with their hit track “Love Drunk,” Boys Like Girls had the crowd jumping immediately and singing their lungs out. The audience discovered quickly what all the guitar picks were for as lead singer Martin Johnson was throwing them into the crowd left and right.

After a few songs, Johnson stopped the show to tell the story of the band’s trip to Kansas City. Coming from Fort Worth, Texas after performing at another festival, the group’s flight was delayed as they were forced to sit on the airport apron for multiple hours before the flight took off. The band made it to Kansas City only about an hour before their performance and as Johnson stated, wasn’t even sure if they would be able to perform at the festival. 

Later on in the show, Johnson got the crowd to sing with him. Right before the song “MIRACLE,” Johnson had the audience repeat the lines “How do I, how do I get you out of my head? I need a miracle.” He would start by saying it, then have the audience sing it back to him. After a few practice rounds, the band began playing the song and once the lyrics came up, Johnson would cut himself off and let the audience sing that verse. 

The band ended its night with its older classics, “Hero/Heroine” and “The Great Escape.” During the final song of the night, “The Great Escape,” the band built up to the chorus, got through the first chorus, and then immediately stopped. Johnson went on to ask everybody in the audience to put their phones away and just listen and sing the final few moments of their performance.

Next. Four bands too good for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Four bands too good for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. dark

While playing through “The Great Escape,” the group transitioned the song back into “Love Drunk,” finishing their performance exactly as they started. 

For their first performance in Kansas City in over a decade, Boys Like Girls showed exactly what the city has been missing. From start to finish, the group had a charisma and enthusiasm about them that no other band at the festival carried. Fans were left in awe as the band took their bows and proceeded to leave the stage.

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