Although Emmely is the youngest member of our team – the talent that comes off her shows thats the future will bring more success. Currently based out of Florida [with some coverage over the pond], Babetalk is excited to see what Emmely will bring in the coming year.
Big shows are always fun, but sometimes nothing beats a stacked local show in a full venue. This was one of the last shows I saw at home before moving five hours away for school, and it was a great way to kick off the school year. A lot of the people in the venue had watched these handful of bands bloom over the last few years, so many knew every word to the songs; the atmosphere was great. People were stage diving and friends got on stage singing with the bands and there were plenty of mic grabs. Many of the bands on the lineup release new music that year and it was such a treat to see the songs come to life on stage. Both Northbound and Intervention went on some big tours in 2017, so it was great to have them back for a home show.
9. Hippo Campus + Remo Drive Fall Tour – High Drive, Gainesville – 11.11.17
This was probably one of the bigger events to hit Gainesville, so it was no surprise that it sold out. The openers, Remo Drive, is a band I just recently got into a few months ago, but I definitely listen to their Greatest Hits daily. They honestly don’t have a single bad song on that record. Such a talented band that will surely take the scene by storm very soon. I’ve already seen their album on countless AOTY lists. It was so obvious that they have great chemistry as a band as goofed around on stage. They also interacted with the crowd a lot, giving out high fives left and right. It was just overall a very fun set to watch. Hippo Campus then tamed the crowd a bit as they took the stage with their smoothing sound. Their sound filled the packed venue providing a great vibes as everyone danced the stress of the week away to Jake Luppen’s soft voice. Overall as a band, they did a fantastic job of captivating the crowd and keeping them on their toes with one banger after the other.
This was a smaller line up compared to previous tours TWY has done, but nevertheless it was very well put together. With Tiny Moving Parts opening the show, there was no doubt that the crowd was hyped up. A set full of emotions and their typical emo twinkle. Trash Boat took the stage by storm bringing a harder set to the table with moody riff-ul songs. Pop-punk giants The Wonder Years then took the stage to finish off the night. This was a show that I was really counting the days down to. Even though this is probably the band I’ve seen live the most, they never, ever fail to amaze me. They just get better and better with each album release and although it is hard to pick my favorite I will never get tired of the crushing songs off of No Closer to Heaven. This band really does a great job performing a song full of soul and channeling their feelings right into the crowd.
This tour was supposed to happen earlier in the year, but was postponed so that frontman – Dan Lambton – could focus on his mental health, which he openly addressed during the show. He discussed the importance of getting help if needed, stating that it is not a sign of weakness. It was good to see Dan doing well as he and the boys dove into a great set. This is probably the smallest venue I’ve ever seen Real Friends in, but the size proved not to be an issue whatsoever, the crowd still went hard. There was plenty of crowd surfing and mic grabs. The atmosphere was so intimate. For the encore the band even took requests right out of the crowd. I am also so so so thankful that Real Friends brought Microwave on board for this tour. This was Microwave‘s first time overseas and I honestly can’t think of another band at that time who deserved the exposure a much as them. They are extremely talented and such great people. If you still have not heard Microwave by the end of this year, stop sleeping on them and get to it!
6. Sharkwrecked at Riptide Music Fest – Fort Lauderdale Beach -12.02.17
104.3 is still a fairly new South Florida radio station but has done lot to bring exposure to alternative scene. Although they do tend to work with bigger bands, I can’t complain, I’m glad that alternative now has a home on the radio. They practically are the reason behind the Sharkwrecked part of the Ford Riptide music festival, booking a lot of talent down to South Florida for one hell of a day. The lineup for this festival was incredible. Never did I ever think I’d get to go see bands as big as Weezer or Cage the Elephant, let alone photograph them. Overall the show was stacked with a ton of other great bands like Portugal the Man, Saint Motel, PVRIS, etc. It was such a great experience to see them all in one day.
Home state heroes A Day To Remember put together a great lineup for an event with a great message. Although there was a greater emphasis on hardcore, it was not hard to draw out pop-punk fans with bands like The Story So Far, Real Friends and State Champs. There really was something for everyone, they even managed to throw in some ska with Streetlight Manifesto and Less Than Jake who happen to be Alex Shelnut’s ,of ADTR, favorite band. Although the weather was a little iffy all day and it poured for a good while, that did not put a damper on things. There were plenty of jams and good laughs as a Spider-Man crowd surfed and skanked. As true locals A Day To Remember played songs some Florida such as “All Signs Point to Lauderdale” and “The Plot to Bomb the Panhandle”. Their set really managed launch you back into emo nostalgia with “If It Means a Lot to You” and “Have Faith in Me“, and of course they ended an awesome day with “The Downfall of Us All.”
*Link is to coverage of Self Help by: James Dicks for Babetalk*
Boston Manor is still unfortunately such an underrated band, but they pack a great punch. Watching them live is such a pleasure. I saw them at the very beginning of this year, and then again in the fall, and the growth was incredible. They just get better every time you see them. They truly deserve the spotlight. They played a great set list consisting of banger like “Lead Feet” and “Trapped Nerve.” The venue was small, but alive with energy. It was great to see how hyped the crowd was for Boston Manor, they sang, they jumped and stage dove. Not only was the headliner of night amazing, but the lineup as a whole. Locals Intervention opened the stacked show, I love seeing them crush it. A Will Away is beyond talented, great music, great vibes and great dudes. And Can’t Swim put on a great and energetic set.
3. FEST – Gainesville, FL – 10.27.17-10.29.17
Although this has only been my second FEST, this event has grown so much on me and is truly an experience. For three days straight all responsibilities become a blur and all there is to focus on is great music and your friends singing along with your favorite lyrics of the band on stage. Suddenly the sleepy college town that normally only comes alive on game days was being run by the punks. The lineup this year was quite impressive with Against Me! as a headliner. But don’t worry the smaller acts were just as good. Bands like Mom Jeans, Fossil Youth, Slingshot Dakota, Pet Symmetry, etc. were all so much fun to watch. Not only does FEST bring good music to town, but it always opens up the floor and makes room for things that are not as often discussed in the music seen. I don’t think I’ve ever been to a music related event where the artists put so much emphasis on inclusivity and the importance of diversity in the scene. I really, really wish there was more I could say about this amazing event, but I really feel that this is something everyone has to experience themselves.
I managed to catch PVRIS three times this year, but nothing beat seeing them at their Orlando show. I saw them in May when they played in Berlin, this was when the there was a lot of hype about the upcoming release of their new album. At the time they were only performing two new songs: “Heaven” which had been released and “Half” which was only being played live with no studio version out.. Turns out that the buzz was completely worth it. As their album dropped in August PVRIS had already hit the ground running and were starting off their North American headliner with a girl power tour lineup, what a dream come true. Party Nails opened the show and I still consistently listen to her, definitely some groovy jams. The creative and very talented Lights took the stage next and blew me away with her incredible range. As they took the stage it was already obvious that PVRIS had grown a lot since their first tour of the year. Their stage set up and effects were so aesthetically pleasing and although they have always been a fun band to watch, their stage presence grew immensely. This was the first tour where PVRIS’ made major changes to the set list, and they managed to balance the set list well by keeping old fans hooked but also reeling everyone in, begging to hear more of their newest material. They have been very busy this year in terms of creativity and production, I can’t wait to see how far they’ll go next year. If PVRIS is not on your radar, 2018 will change that, I’m sure of it.
1. The Front Bottoms – House of Blues – 11.19.2016
The Front Bottoms is a band that I make sure I see any time they’re in town, definitely one of my favorites. This was one of the few shows this year that I actually did not photograph, and honestly I couldn’t be any more thankful for that. I didn’t have to worry about a bulky camera bag or anything happening to my camera in the sea of concert goers of the sold out show. I feel like people always underestimate the crowd at a Front Bottoms’ show? It’s a lot rougher than most people would expect, but honestly I didn’t mind. I stood in the middle of the venue packed in tightly with the rest of the pit and the energy in the venue was amazing; you could literally feel it. The crowd moved like the tides, swaying from one side of the venue to the other as The Front Bottoms played songs off of I Hate My Friends and Going Grey and everything in between. I am extremely happy to have been able to hear song off their newest album, even though they honestly don’t have a single bad release out there, in my opinion. It was a blast seeing one of my favorite bands in a packed venue, catching glimpse of other people in the crowd every now and then singing the lyrics back to one another while dodging another crowd surfer. And even played my favorite song “Wolfman.” By the time the show was over I was soaked to the bone and my voice was practically gone. It was incredible, I can’t remember the last time a show has made me feel this alive.
Last modified: December 31, 2017