As quickly as When We Had been Younger was introduced again in January, could be attendees throughout social media dubbed it “emo fyre fest”. To be truthful, there was a myriad of causes naysayers had doubts: the competition could be going down in the midst of the desert off the Las Vegas strip, and the jam-packed post-punk line-up of over 60 bands appeared unimaginable contemplating it might all must happen in simply 12 hours.
Nonetheless, final weekend on Saturday, October 22, it appeared the unimaginable was lastly going to happen. However, sadly, the primary day of the fest was canceled on account of a high-wind advisory in Nevada, leaving would-be attendees cautious about whether or not or not When We Had been Younger was ever going to stay as much as its hype.
Fortunately, on Sunday, October 23, as gates lastly open, it is clear that the emo scene’s new music competition would outline the worst expectations, present the unimaginable attainable, and make many naysayers want they’d snagged tickets.
Proper off the bat, the competition stays true to its advertising and marketing with early-aughts emo favorites like Mayday Parade and Boys Like Ladies giving followers the day’s first dose of nostalgia. Mayday Parade’s lead singer Derek Sanders makes certain to emphasise the lyrics “I had a dream final evening / We drove out to see Las Vegas” from their 2007 hit ‘Jamie All Over’ to the group’s glee.
In a while the competition’s Pink Stage, Boys Like Ladies lead singer Martin Johnson desires followers to have an genuine 2006 expertise when he awkwardly stops enjoying ‘The Nice Escape’ mid-way, asking the viewers to cease recording the efficiency and put their telephones away.
A part of the genre-focused music competition’s finest moments comes by means of inevitable stay collaborations, and Sunday’s acts ship. Kellin Quinn of Sleeping with Sirens joins Pierce The Veil to rock out to ‘King For The Day’. Because the solar goes down, Taking Again Sunday brings out unlikely visitor DJ Steve Aoki to carry out their new single ‘Simply Us Two’ — a complicated alternative for a lot of viewers members who aren’t conscious of the collab. One of the best shock second, nevertheless, comes by means of All Time Low’s lead singer Alex Gaskarth and lead guitarist Jack Barakat becoming a member of Avril Lavigne to cowl Blink-182’s pop-punk basic ‘All The Small Issues’ as “elder emos” with their youthful counterparts. within the crowd collectively dropping their minds.
Lavigne delivers fan favorites ‘Girlfriend’ and ‘My Completely happy Ending’ with a wild burst of power, nevertheless it’s clear she’s battling sound points that plague many of the artists’ units all through the day. However sound points cannot stand in opposition to the pop-punk princess, belting out the ballad, ‘Chunk Me’ — a second that additionally sees her bringing out fiancée and fellow musician Mod Solar — earlier than transporting the viewers again to 2002 with an acoustic observe off her first file ‘I am with You’.
Because the evening dwindles on and a desert chill creeps up on followers, it is clear competition goers within the pit are beginning to really feel the toll of the lengthy day. However that each one modifications when Deliver Me The Horizon take the Black Stage, electrifying the tiring crowd.
Opening with ‘Can You Really feel My Coronary heart’, lead singer Oli Sykes screams his coronary heart out and riles up an amassing crowd of 1000’s of individuals to leap, mosh, punch and scream alongside. Sykes even taunts the group, shouting, “now in case you do not soar, you are a fucking shithead!” By the center of their set, the entire crowd is roaring the lyrics of ‘Shadow Moses’ again on the Deliver Me The Horizon whereas stage flames body the head-banging band, proper earlier than the extraordinary craving of ‘Drown’ turns the notch up on the power ranges on the Las Vegas Competition Grounds.
Essentially the most thrilling acts of the evening are, unsurprisingly, probably the most anticipated headliners: Paramore and My Chemical Romance, two bands which have paved the best way for and impressed many of the bands on the lineup.
Paramore shocks the crammed crowd, opening with the stay debut of deep-cut ‘All I Needed’ — a music they often do not play stay as a result of pressure it places on vocalist Hayley Williams. After all, Williams nails it and hits every excessive observe with skilled precision. One other notable addition to Paramore’s setlist is arguably probably the greatest of their discography: ‘Final Hope’, a observe that feels cinematic in opposition to the backdrop of Las Vegas lights.
True to herself, Williams takes her valuable time on stage, reflecting on what everyone seems to be celebrating at When We Had been Younger. “Tonight we’re celebrating emo,” Williams begins earlier than delving into the scene’s historical past. “… However we acquired misplaced alongside the best way and, within the early 2000s, when Paramore got here onto the scene… the scene was not at all times a secure place to be in case you have been totally different.” The formidable frontwoman goes on to clarify how emo music has usually been an area for white cis males. As Paramore builds into their breakthrough hit ‘Distress Enterprise’ Williams guarantees to at all times present a secure house for “younger girls, individuals of shade and the queer neighborhood.”
Lastly, emo scene founding fathers My Chemical Romance take the stage. In a hilarious subversion and nod to the competition identify, lead singer Gerard Approach not solely attire in his basic early 2000s period black swimsuit and pink tie, but in addition wears growing old make-up and prosthetics. The band brings an entire new which means to “elder emo,” virtually as if to remind followers “we’re not younger anymore, and neither are you.”
Elder emo standing apart, MCR nonetheless reveals the group of 60,000 followers they’ll deliver new life to outdated favourites. ‘I am Not Okay (I Promise)’ and ‘Helena’ tackle a recent mild with the band nonetheless leaning into the theatrical stage presence they’re recognized for. The band performs a setlist that encompasses most of their assorted discography, however they notably (and fortunately) do not play new songs. This calculated feat continues till the band closes the evening with ‘Vampire Cash’, leaving revellers in a hazy glow of nostalgia, pleasure, and fireworks that replenish the Vegas sky on the final observe.
It takes rather a lot to stay as much as the hype and pull off what many thought was unimaginable, however as followers head again into the desert of their checkered vans with broad smiles throughout their faces, it is secure to say the emo fest was not solely a celebration for these wanting nostalgia however proof optimistic of a extra inclusive post-punk future.