REVIEW: Mayday Parade at The Academy

It’s easy to think that the music you used to listen to disappeared when you grew up. Mayday Parade’s gig at the Academy this week shows just how wrong that notion is.

The band roared onto the stage at 9.30 after three rounds of support acts, including the manic energy of The Maine, to screams of applause from the underage crowd. The set was a contrast of new songs from their most recent album ‘Black Lines’ and old fan favourites.

At points, the difference between the two was tangible. ‘Black Lines’ is a departure from the usual Mayday Parade formula of poppy choruses and sing along ballads. It’s a heavier, darker album and draws more from harder rock acts such as Stone Temple Pilots rather than All Time Low. When the soft verses of Terrible Things transitions to the harsh guitars of Hollow the tone change can be a jarring experience.

After the first few songs lead singer Derek Sanders stopped and spoke the crowd. He told them about the promise they had made at their last gig two years ago; that they’d return to Dublin in two years. The majority teenage crowd ate this up and cheered although it’s doubtful that many of them were there two years ago; many looked like they were twelve in 2014.

This is not to belittle their fans. They are dedicated. Every single lyric Sanders sang was echoed back by the crowd; sung word for word by sweating teenagers with one hand reaching out to touch the band and one hand on their phones. At the culmination of Miserable at Best the whole band left the stage, including Sanders who had one last request; “Keep singing”. The crowd joyously finished the verse without music or lyrics to keep them in time.

Sanders made the same promise again, Mayday Parade would return to Dublin in 2018, to sonorous applause.  But the question remains as to whether this crowd will be here to see them. Undoubtedly most will grow up and out of their obsession with bands like Mayday Parade but that’s missing the point.

There will always be a crowd like the crowd in the Academy on Tuesday night for Mayday Parade. There will always be teenagers to love them and know every word. When Mayday Parade returns in 2018 they will find a crowd of different faces, same age.


Sean Looney

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