Monday night, Bayside proved that they are timelessly pop-punk. Shortly after 7PM, Portlandians trickled into Revolution Hall. It took me a good while to find the venue, as it sits inside of a retired school high school auditorium. The school formally known as Washington High School closed in 1981 and was revitalized in 2014. Monday’s show might have been a short one, but it was a night to remember. Like many fans, I grew up listening to Bayside through angsty home-burned CDs, so naturally this night was surreal, but the lineup exceeded my expectations fully.
Long Island-band Koyo was up first. Not many in the crowd knew who they were, but they quickly picked up the energy and gave them what everyone came for. Usually Monday nights aren’t the most energetic times for openers but you could sense the ambition off these guys. Their set started with them asking unknown fans to come in closer and let the set be an intimate one. Right off the bat i knew that I would be a fan. The first three songs they played were unreleased tracks that I will be eagerly awaiting the release for.
As exciting as the first band’s set was, I Am The Avalanche reminded me of everything I was missing. Over the holidays, Portland’s music scene has been a little dry and I’ve found myself in a slump. As excited I was for this and was enjoying the first act, I Am The Avalanche brought the energy up 5,000 percent. Outrageous jokes, uplifting energy, and absolute madness ensued. It was at this point that I realized how much live shows impacted not just my life, but everyone in the room. Watching the crowd for this show was like watching hundreds of gears turning. Everyone was slowly gaining momentum and thoroughly enjoying the show.
Bayside’s performance was the cherry on top of what was already a very good night. They opened with a tear-jerking recording of fans reciting what the band means to them, when they started listening to them and why they love them. I caught a glimpse of a few in the front row getting teary-eyed. When the band came on stage, it’s like time-stopped for a few seconds, I could hear the drums starting up for their song, “Big Cheese” and it suddenly time resumed and moved even faster than I could comprehend. Shooting a show always has me flabbergasted, but this one in particularly had be stargazed. Bayside wasn’t my favorite band growing up, but they heavily shaped the pop-punk music scene and were a stable reminder of the music that I grew up with.
Needless to say, the vocals sounded just like the studio versions of the songs. Not many vocalists can pull it off, but Anthony Raneri sounds just as skilled as he did on the bands first record. While I was standing off to the side protecting my camera and livelihood, a group of girls rushed past me having the time of their lives. They screaming the lyrics of “Sick, Sick, Sick” and giggling as they made their way dancing into the pit. It reminded me of the fun times I’ve had with friends and the absolute freedom you feel at a show. Bayside played a packed setlist of 21 of their greatest hits and even a spirited cover of “Megan” by Smoking Pipes.
If you have the chance to catch them at their remaining shows, I highly suggest grabbing tickets! This tour is not one you want to miss.