Where: O2 Forum, Kentish Town
It’s pure self-indulgence. The quintessential boys-next-door of ‘00s emo pop-punk grasp at the glory days of what was, and remains, a piece of teen angst perfection. Now-adult fans don’t have to work at pretending they enjoy new songs and can simply gorge on the yesteryear of their youth without shame.
Ten years have passed since the release of A Lesson in Romantics, Mayday Parade’s debut album. But, tonight, those decade-old numbers feel fresh as we peel back the scabs from pubescent relationships and first heartbreaks to relive emotions we thought we’d long overcome. Haunting memories come rushing to the surface and a flood of feeling pours from the room.
Of course, the likes of ‘Jamie All Over’, ‘Jersey’ and ‘Miserable At Best’ have stuck since 2007, but other rarities from the album make for an incredible setlist – one of Mayday Parade’s finest. Spitting post-break up hatred to ‘If You Wanted a Song Written About You, All You Had to Do Was Ask’; wailing about our first loves with ‘Walk on Water or Drown’; and sobbing our hearts out to ‘You Be The Anchor That Keeps My Feet On The Ground, I’ll Be The Wings That Keep Your Heart In The Clouds’ is a real treat.
As if the album hasn’t completely exhausted our capacity for emotional outpouring on a Saturday night, we are truly pushed to our limits with what follows. To round off the show – in what we can only assume is an attempt to leave us drowning in our own tears – Mayday Parade perform gut-wrenching renditions of ‘Terrible Things’ and ‘Stay’ followed by three final killers – ‘Three Cheers for Five Years’, ‘Kids in Love’ and ‘Oh Well, Oh Well’.
We are drained. But – somehow – we are happy.