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Bayside Just Like Home Tour - Reviewed

By Z

The Bourbon is one of my favorite locations because of the close and personal feel you can get with bands. As I prepped for the first opener, Koyo, I chatted with another photographer. His name is Trevor (@trapdaddy_trev) and he made the experience all the more pleasant. Another interaction I had was with a father and his nine-year-old daughter. I asked if it was her first concert and she shook her head. Her dad informed me that she had been to at least 20 by now. I found out that their names are Derek and Penny and they drove from Kansas City to see Bayside. If fans were this dedicated then the band must be good. She told me her favorite song by them was Prayers and she was excited to hear it.

Koyo at The Bourbon Theatre in Lincoln, NE 2.25.23 Photo Credit:

Koyo took the stage and filled the room with melodic guitar and memorable drums. Koyo LIHC is a hardcore punk band from Stony Brook, New York. The band was formed in 2016 by vocalist and guitarist Eric Haines, bassist and vocalist Tyler Rinaldi, and drummer and vocalist Nick DiGiovanni. To date Koyo LIHC has released two EPs, "Diamond One" and "Call It Off," and currently working on their debut album. After the first song, the lead singer removed his shirt and performed the rest of the set shirtless. The sound of their music felt nostalgic as I reminisced over when I found all these "old bands" that were alternative rock artists. It reminded me of the first era of Avril Lavigne mixed with a deeper rasp to the typical emo boy band sound. The crowd went wild during their energetic set and I have to applaud the stage presence the whole band brought. They had command over the crowd and got everyone to jump and wave their phone lights. Their set evoked plenty of emotion and I had a blast jamming out to their heavier sound alongside their softer melodies.

As we waited for the next set, Penny informed me that her mother owned a boutique down in Liberty, MO called The Parlor. Derek clarified that it was named The Parlor because it used to be an old funeral parlor. I thought that was super cool and metal as hell.

The next band was I Am the Avalanche. This band is an American punk rock band from Brooklyn, New York which was formed in 2004 by vocalist Vinnie Caruana who also is the vocalist for bands The Movielife and Long Island. I Am The Avalanche has released four studio albums to date, "Through the Pain" (2007), "Worlds Apart" (2009), "Bury Me at Makeout Creek" (2013), and "Avalanche" (2017).

They came on stage and started with a bang. Their energy was high but they seemed relaxed and fluid. Their sound reminds me of Maine meets Linkin Park or maybe a more soulful and gritty The Cab. I adore this mix for the harder vocals over tasteful guitar riffs and bass. After their first song, they teased about drinking whiskey and heartily took sips of their drinks. The next song they sang was a musical interpretation of when they took shrooms in Amsterdam. This song made me laugh and the smiles on the band reminded me of any mischievous young boy. After this song, the lead singer paused to look at his beer bottle before saying "Those are the bluest mountains I've ever seen". He then asks the crowd and his band members if their mountains are just as blue. It got the crowd to laugh and cheer. The homemade and MySpace-era sound was intoxicating. Looking around the crowd of mixed ages made me realize the unity this music has given people.

Bayside at The Bourbon Theatre in Lincoln, NE 2.25.23 Photo Credit:

Going into this show I had never heard of Bayside but was stoked to hear them play after streaming some of their music the day of the show. For context, Bayside is an American punk-rock band from the Bayside, Queens neighborhood of New York City, formed in 2000 by lead vocalist Anthony Raneri and consists of lead guitarist Jack O'Shea, bassist Nick Ghanbarian, and drummer Chris Guglielmo. Since their formation, the group has released eight full-length albums, with their debut, Sirens and Condolences, in 2004, and the release of 2005's follow-up, Bayside, launching the band into mainstream success. The band released six more albums: The Walking Wounded (2007), Shudder (2008), Killing Time (2011), Cult (2014), Vacancy (2016), and Interrobang (2019). Known for their melodic punk sound, they've been compared to bands such as Taking Back Sunday, Brand New, and The Used. The band's lyrics often deal with personal struggles and relationships, and they have been praised for their honest and relatable songwriting. All I knew was that they were a punk rock band and that I was expected to love them so I decided to listen to a few Bayside songs after I was asked to cover the show. Little did I know, I was going to fall a rabbit hole and fall back through time. The music reminded me of classic alternative punk rock which flooded me with nostalgia from middle school.

Bayside had an intro audio playing of different fans describing the change Bayside has had on them. They began to overlap and rapidly talk faster and faster until one voice remained: "Bayside is family." It might've been love but it was a impactful phrase that showed the emotional impact music has on people. As they began they reminded me of the vocals of All Time Low with the instrumentals of Set it Off circa "Sleep When I'm Dead" era and a touch of The Struts. Their guitarists were all amazingly talented and every person crowded to the front to get as close as they could. The music washed over the waves of fans that swayed to the music. Their push and pull are powered by the amps blasting this gritty and raw music. I fell in love with their vocals and instrumentals as they blasted through my bones.

I left that night adding three new bands to my playlists, an appreciation for word-of-mouth marketing, and a great new experience in my pocket. All these bands have mastered the gritty and raw sound of Midwest alternative. The 'Just Like Home' tour goes through mid-March ending in Jersey City, NJ. You can find tickets HERE! Bayside's 'Blue EP' is set to be released digitally on March 17th with the limited edition vinyl releasing on April 21st via Hopeless Records which you can preorder HERE.

*Updated 4.30.23*


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