Celebrating the 11th Anniversary of their self-titled album, Mayday Parade brought their show to Bristol’s Marble Factory for a night of emo madness with some familiar faces.
Opening the show was As It Is, who opened the show straight away with lots of energy and excitement. There were certainly a few passionate fans at the front, singing back every word to frontman Patty Walters. Getting right down to the front, Patty made even the first band of the night feel like a connection, and the fans who got down to the show early were not disappointed.
From the first band, I could tell this was going to be an interesting lighting design, with lots of strobes, smoke and cool colours going across the stage.
Even those who didn’t know all the songs were dancing along, with Patty organising the crowd like a conductor. There was an emotionally shared moment with the crowd, talking about the mental health impact of not touring and how good it was to be back, a thought shared amongst many people in the audience. And then for a lively final two songs, the band once again rocked out hard.
With Real Friends next, they would have a difficult job living up to the first set.
Now, Real Friends are one of my favourite bands out there, and I was really excited. It’s not often I’m singing along in the photo pit. Don’t get me wrong, the crowd was once again amazing and the stage energy from the band was great, but the mix was terrible. From all points in the venue, you could hardly hear the vocals, guitar and bass, where all you could hear was drums. I think Cody was also having trouble with his in-ears, as he spent a fair amount of time at the back of the stage talking into the mic and playing around with his belt pack and monitors.
Nevertheless, the set was still good fun, with Cody getting a circle pit going for Late Nights In My Car, and even getting people up to crowdsurf during Mess.
And finally it was time for Mayday Parade to come on.
The stage set alone showed that this would be an ace set, with the band logo in big behind them.
To start, frontman Derek came on solo, to start off Oh Well, Oh Well, before the rest of the band joined on stage for the drop. And once that drop hit, the crowd went wild! Straight away the mosh pits opened and the dancing started, and it did not stop for the whole night.
Celebrating a decade (and a bit) of the self-titled album, it was only right that the album was played in full, with Derek bringing the acoustic guitar out for You’re Dead Wrong, but in true pop-punk style that didn’t stop the crowd being as lively as they were already, if not more.
Keeping the album going, Derek then moved over to the keys for Stay, before going back to just vocals and running and jumping around the stage like a mad man for the rest of the set.
Sadly the mix was still pretty terrible, with too much drums and not enough of everything else, and although the crowd singing along did make up for it slightly, it still was difficult to hear the band as they should be heard.
After getting through the album in full, the band left the stage briefly before coming back to sing one of their new ones – Kids Of Summer, taken from last years EP What It Means To Fall Apart. And then of course the night couldn’t go by without the two favourites. Jersey and Jamie All Over rocked the crowd for one more time, with even more mosh pits and crowd surfers for one last time that night.
And what a show it was. My 16 year old emo self would be very happy, getting to see three amazing bands that were all a big part of my childhood at once on one great stage. All played amazing sets but it was a shame the mix was so off. Hopefully that was just a one off and it will be better for the rest of the run of the tour.
As always, a massive thank you to the staff and security at the venue, as well as the bands and crew for making it a good night.
Words and Photos by Ted Stargatt for TrueStyleMusic