With an amazing studio-quality performance last night at House of Blues, the guys in Bayside showed why they've been able to last 15 years as a touring band.
Their entire performance was a constant sing-a-long with the fans in attendance. Not a single song failed to feature crowd participation, and not a single song failed to have a moment where it was hard to hear singer Anthony Raneri over the crowd. One of the first notable moments was during “Duality.” The crowd sung every word alongside Raneri. He sported a grin, but that's nothing out of the ordinary for Raneri as he's always smiling on stage.
One of the things Bayside does on stage so well is seamlessly flow from one song to the next, never slowing down the pace. They give the fans as much as they can. They went perfectly from “Already Gone” into “They're Not Horses They're Unicorns.” For anyone unfamiliar with the band, the only cue of a song change was the crowd’s applause as the next song started.
Raneri put down his guitar for “Landing Feet First” and simply stood in front of the mic and sung; it was the only song of the night that didn't have him playing guitar. As he was walking around stage during an instrumental break, Raneri reached out into the crowd and grabbed a fan’s phone to take a picture. He couldn't get past the security lock on the phone and handed it back to the fan and grabbed another but the same thing happened. Raneri yelled, “You guys totally screwed it up” and laughed. As the song ended he told the crowd they needed to trust everyone a little more and take the locks off their phone because he was going to “take the most epic selfie that Cleveland had ever seen.” It was a funny moment that received laughs from the crowd and shows Raneri's playful nature on stage.
After “They Looked Like Strong Hands,” Bayside left the stage and the lights went off. Shortly, a spotlight came on pointing into the crowd where Raneri stood with an acoustic guitar. Alone, he performed “Don't Call Me Peanut” down in the crowd as fans circled around and tried to get as close as possible. A moment like this shows Bayside's huge connection with its fans. At one point, bassist Nick Ghanbarian asked how many people in the crowd were watching them for the tenth or more time as cheers erupted and numerous arms raised. With such a loyal fan base and amazing live performances, Bayside is here to stay, as Raneri proved as he ended the night by saying, “Here's to 15 years as a band and here's to 15 more.”
Before Bayside took the stage, Senses Fail warmed the crowd up. Vocalist Buddy Nielsen is nothing short of a ball of energy on stage. Throughout their set, Nielsen would do somersaults all over the stage, throw the mic, jump rope with the chord and so much more. He was a breath of fresh air the crowd needed as he finally woke the fans up. After the band played “Can't Be Saved,” the crowd was ready to go for the rest of the night. Fans mirrored Nielsen's singing of the chorus and were the loudest they had been all night.