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Saves the Day / Senses Fail

Saves the Day / Senses Fail: live in New Yorklive in New York (2005)
live show

Reviewer Rating: 3.5


Contributed by: InaGreendaseBrian
(others by this writer | submit your own)

After a refreshingly short wait between the time of doors and showtime at New York City's Irving Plaza, Vagrant young'uns Emanuel opened things up. With the type of "rock'n'roll attitude" attempted in their songs, I expected some pretty grungy-looking, Southern dudes to walk out on stage. Instead, I.


After a refreshingly short wait between the time of doors and showtime at New York City's Irving Plaza, Vagrant young'uns Emanuel opened things up. With the type of "rock'n'roll attitude" attempted in their songs, I expected some pretty grungy-looking, Southern dudes to walk out on stage. Instead, I got a very young-looking band with a singer who looked like a 5'5" Richie Cunningham, decked out in an `80s sweatband. I've more or less described their sound as Senses Fail-meets-rock'n'roll and their live performance didn't sway that. In their defense, they played with precision and probably converted a few fans in a rather dead crowd despite a set that, despite everyone in the band moving around and a drummer just about losing it, likely would've benefitted from some more visible energy. In the very least the set included "Hey Man" (complete with the super awesome spoken-word intro), "Buy American Machines" (thankfully, as it's one of their better songs and was played finely here), "The Willing," "The Hotline," and "Soundtrack to a Headrush."

The Early November was next, and have seemingly strengthened their stage presence in the last few years, aside from an underwhelmingly present third guitarist on several songs. It was discomforting to see a rather stagnant front-man in Ace Enders during the band's opener and most energetic song they've recorded to date though, in "Every Night's Another Story." Actually, the band's seeming spokesman for the evening was bassist Sergio Anello, who'd introduced the band, done rather amusing head grooving during the set, and by set's end had dove off a good 10/15-foot speaker into the crowd with bass guitar in hand. Two new songs were played; the first Enders preceded by announcing the band's triple-disc album as having a March 2006 release date and said that the next song would be quite different from what fans would normally expect. A funky use of keyboard was the only difference I noticed, and pretty much carried the modern emo rock sound they've been branded with since gaining any speck of notoriety. The second involved some extravagant hand motions from Enders while he sung his verses, of which seemed to have more of a personality than most of the band's other songs. "Something That Produces Results," "The Mountain Range in My Living Room," and "Baby Blue" were a few others I remember as being played, and with a steady performance in tow kids ate it up.

Somehow, some way, I used to be a fairly mild Senses Fail fan. Despite their absolutely wretched songwriting abilities and sound that was riding the all-too-familiar coattails of a stale and yet never dying sound, I guess their sheer catchy power was what pulled me in, if only faintly. Over time my enjoyment turned to annoyance and disgustion as their musical and lyrical developments went nowhere. It's safe to say it hit its all-time low here. The band came out on stage to some `80s hair metal riffs, and I couldn't tell how tongue-in-cheek it actually was. From there on I was treated to some sweet push moshing a short distance within my short left, fans convulsing while being "[loved] gently with a chainsaw," and a ridiculously loud mess onstage. I'm fairly sure the band was playing together and on time just fine, but the guitars were turned up so overbearingly loud it just came out like one big ball of bad nü-emo noise. At one completely random point between songs, singer Buddy Nielsen spouted "it's all about killing cops...killing cops and reading Kerouac;" I want to say something pretentious about no one in the audience catching the off-base reference, but you know, it's probably true (though made even more strange by the certain band shirt I happened to be wearing at the time). "Lady in a Blue Dress," "Buried a Lie," "Rum is for Drinking, Not for Burning," and closer "187" was included in a painfully hour-long set (the band is co-headlining with STD). Of particular note was their inclusion of "American Death," a new track that'll appear on the forthcoming reissue of 2004's Let It Enfold You, set to cause internal bleeding November 1st. It was ironic, since I firmly believe the song strives for a hardcore-via-Southern-rock-sound ¡ la latter-era Every Time I Die, but more just ends up sounding like the band's label and current tourmates, Emanuel.

My anticipation finally hit home as Saves the Day took to the stage, including a baby fat version of Lost Boy Chris Conley, and temp fill-in Glassjaw bassist Manuel Carrero, on tour in spot of the recently departed Eben D'Amico. While the band's last headlining tour was practically a huge celebration for fans thanks to fulfilled promises of older material being played, including cuts from the notoriously great Lifetime tribute in Can't Slow Down, I embraced the idea of this being renewed for the current tour rather ambitiously. We were treated to a healthy number of tracks off my personal favorite of the band's discography, Through Being Cool, with Stay What You Are acting as main ambassador for the set list. While the transition to "Holly Hox Forget Me Nots" was a bit sloppy, once things got going it was a highlight; the song's mid-tempo frame is perfect for the band's material as of late -- or so you'd think until you heard the new song. While it may be hard to believe, the one new song the band played off their forthcoming, recently recorded full-length, was fast. Like, Can't Slow Down fast, just about. Parts of it were angry. Needless to say, I was floored. Your preferences of the band's career aside, this may be their most energetic, up-tempo album in at least six years, and I for one have my faith in the band completely restored after 2003's abysmal In Reverie (of whom a few songs have grown on me, but still comes off as a mostly emotionless, uninspired record). What made the set even better was the pacing of older material; as bands tend to do, STD has, for the past few touring years, played their faster songs rather mid-paced, which really hurts the flow and general feel. Here they actually kept it up; for example, the driven, pop-punk masterpiece "You Vandal" was played just as it should: Not exactly breakneck speed, but at the quick beat the studio version is known for. While only one song off CSD was included, it was quite the rarity; Conley stood on stage alone with guitar in hand to play "Three Miles Down;" it's likely the only time I'll ever hear it live, and I was thankful.

While the crowd was undeniably shitty -- 60% of the front row area looked completely sedated for half of the set and usually unaware of the song's lyrics -- and the openers probably don't fall under your tastes, I have to recommend attending this, if just for the new song alone. They even play the best tracks off In Reverie (see: single/opener, title track)! There's about a month of dates left, and if you're a fan in some scope or another, it's definitely mandatory attendance.

Set List (in chronological order by way of discography):

  • Three Miles Down (electric, Chris alone)
  • All-Star Me
  • You Vandal
  • Shoulder to the Wheel
  • Rocks Tonic Juice Magic
  • Holly Hox, Forget Me Nots
  • Ups and Downs
  • At Your Funeral
  • Cars & Calories
  • Certain Tragedy
  • As Your Ghost Takes Flight
  • Freakish
  • Firefly
  • Anywhere With You
  • Where Are You?
  • In Reverie
  • new song

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (December 19, 2005)

Yeah, as far as the Three Miles Down comment is concerned, I've seen STD about 7 times, and the first and only time I've heard it live was when Chris did this unannounced charity solo acoustic show in Princeton...and even then, he only did it when he started taking requests (which was possibly the coolest thing i've ever been a part of btw) and even then it took him a minute to remember how to play it. Sadly, he could not fulfill my longtime desire to hear Jodie played live...he couldn't remember the guitar part for it...and to the kid claiming other people aren't as hardcore of a fan as he is...shush, you're a douche

tsugurl (November 11, 2005)

senses fail rocks
later
4rm a sk8er

fritobandito (November 2, 2005)

At one completely random point between songs, singer Buddy Nielsen spouted "it's all about killing cops...killing cops and reading Kerouac;"

HAHAHAHAHA

Anonymous (November 1, 2005)

i saw saves the day in montreal when they combined tours with the thrice/bled/underoath tour. Saves the days set blew my mind. The new song is rediculously good and definitley gives hope for what the new album wil bring. I was a little dissapointed that they didnt play any Cant slow down, but i cant complain because i got to see them twice in support of that album and have seen lthem like 15 times. one of the best live bands around.

SilentStorms (November 1, 2005)

Yeah I've seen STD on numerous occasions and have never seen them play Three Miles Down - sorry for being such a loser.

Anonymous (November 1, 2005)

"While only one song off CSD was included, it was quite the rarity; Conley stood on stage alone with guitar in hand to play "Three Miles Down;" it's likely the only time I'll ever hear it live, and I was thankful. "

"Not sure what you're talking about here. They've never stopped playing this song live. And more often than not, Chris plays it solo. Obviously you're not a seasoned STD vet as you claim to be."

3 miles down? I've seen them 5 times and have yet to see 3 miles down performed live.

pacer (October 31, 2005)

"disgustion" isn't a word.

Anonymous (October 31, 2005)

Saw this concert here in Rochester last night and Saves The Day fucking rocked. It was great to see them play some older songs and they had a slightly different lineup than listed here - they played 2 new songs, both of which were awesome. as for the other bands...didn't care for em too much - I'd seen The Early November before and they jsut didn't play as well as normal. As for Senses Fail...left after their first song. Was first time seeing them and expecting something...but wow they fucking suck live. It was pretty funny when about 1/3 the crowd left after STD's set. Anyways...rock on Saves The Day - can't wait to hear the new stuff

Anonymous (October 30, 2005)

opinions are like assholes. everybody's got one. I attended the one @ the docks in Toronto last night. It was pretty good. For some reason, The Early November got the better of me. The bassist also jumped from the speakers into the crowd. Took a while to get up and pull him out by the security guards, I must say. lol! Saves the Day was also awesome :) Emanuel was just a pain in the ass, you couldn't really hear the lyrics. Senses Fail made the crowd go wild. Mosh pit broke out in the middle, people were like hanging on for dear life! All in all, it was awesome!

-jzY

Anonymous (October 30, 2005)

what is the point of Saves The Day - awful pop crap

ZDP (October 29, 2005)

This may have been posted somewhere else for all I know, but why isn't Eben in the band anymore?

Anonymous (October 29, 2005)

I'm not a homophobe or anything, but Chris likes the business of a cock- Right?

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

I can see the dislike toward In Reverie, even though I personally like it. However, what puzzles me is that any fan of the band could dislike Tomorrow Too Late.

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

Where are all the haters?

inagreendase (October 28, 2005)

Despite using the word "despite" way too many times

Eh, three times isn't terrible. You're just referring to the one sentence that had double usage, which is pretty bad admittedly.

OverDefined (October 28, 2005)

I saw this show last night in Boston and I have to say that Senses Fail is terrible. The singing was really bad and his moves seemed really fake and forced.
It was awesome to see Saves the Day rocking again. I haven't heard them play fast and hard like that since '01 and the new song was the most punk-sounding song they've ever done. They're going to have a huge comeback when that new album comes out.

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

Despite using the word "despite" way too many times, this wasn't a bad review of a show that I would never attend.

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

"While only one song off CSD was included, it was quite the rarity; Conley stood on stage alone with guitar in hand to play "Three Miles Down;" it's likely the only time I'll ever hear it live, and I was thankful. "

Not sure what you're talking about here. They've never stopped playing this song live. And more often than not, Chris plays it solo. Obviously you're not a seasoned STD vet as you claim to be.

hmmmmYEAH (October 28, 2005)

i am so pissed this tour isn't coming through st. louis. i would have paid any amount of money (within reason) to hear saves the day.

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

I'm not saying that I necessarily agree with this review 100%, but THIS GUY CAN WRITE. And it's obvious he knew enough about his subject matter to deliver a viable critique. THIS IS MORE LIKE IT. Kudos to you, Brian.

ejaculine (October 28, 2005)

Can't Slow Down - 7
Through Being Cool- 8.5
Stay What You Are - 9
In Reverie - 8.5 (I don't get why people didnt like it)

backupdork (October 28, 2005)

"saves the day changes lives."

you're true. this review almost made me cry. last time i saw this band, they played Always Ten Feet Tall and i almost lost it. Three Miles Down and You Vandal may surely have the same effect on me. Cleveland cannot come soon enough.

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

In Reverie is the best album Saves the Day ever made, no doubt about it.

inagreendase (October 28, 2005)

Rounding off...

Can't Slow Down - 8
Through Being Cool - 9.5
Acoustic EP - 7.5
Stay What You Are - 7
Ups & Downs - 7.5
In Reverie - 2.5

poopypants (October 28, 2005)

my 2 cents

can't slow down-7
through being cool-10
stay what you are-9
in reverie-7

paul

poopypants (October 28, 2005)

oh, and although 'in reverie' is my least fav i still give conoley props for not giving a shit what the label or fans wanted and did his own freaky deaky thing.

tomorrow too late is one of his best songs to date.

paul

poopypants (October 28, 2005)

hearing 'you vandal' live would seal the deal for me. i've seen saves the day live twice I believe, and they didnt play it either time.

paul

scores for saves the day overall

blinkrules (October 28, 2005)

definitely agree, new song sounded suprisingly good. Very good setlist, although I wanted to hear Sell My Old Clothes.

xblakeyoung (October 28, 2005)

My rating is:

Can't Slow Down - 10
Through Being Cool - 8
I'm Sorry I'm Leaving - 6
Stay What You Are - 8
In Reverie - 6.5
Ups and Downs - 5

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

"Woah... thanks Brian. I really can't wait for the new album, as the reviews were so bad for In Reverie I still don't have it."

Same here. I downloaded it, listened to it 3 or 4 times, then deleted every song, and I still haven't purchased it. Only Saves The Day album I don't have.

As for the guy a few posts below who rated each album, you couldn't be farther off:
Can't Slow Down - 10
Through Being Cool - 9
Stay What You Are - 6
In Reverie - 1

xblakeyoung (October 28, 2005)

Welcome back Lifetime.

thirtyseconds (October 28, 2005)

Woah... thanks Brian. I really can't wait for the new album, as the reviews were so bad for In Reverie I still don't have it.

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

thats a killer set list!
fuck

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

his show ruled, but std was the only band worth seeing. and while i was dissapointed that they didnt play old stuff, i've accepted that they're a different band now, and aren't a lifetime cover band. and i've also accepted that i'll have to wait until their farewell tour to hear can't slow down material. and i'm ok with that.

saves the day changes lives. period. fuck you if you don't appreciate this band.

joeg (October 28, 2005)

"From there on I was treated to some sweet push moshing "

:/

colin (October 28, 2005)

disappointed theyre not playing my sweet fracture. that's one of my favorite endings of any pop punk song.

but props to lending a hand to the old material. in reviere was awful and stay what you are doesnt have good live material.

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

Can't Slow Down - 7
Through Being Cool- 9
Stay What You Are - 10
In Reverie - 8 (I like it, sue me)

steveman (October 28, 2005)

Senses Fail may not be great, but Saves The Day kicks ass. Score is for every Saves The Day record before Reverie

Anonymous (October 28, 2005)

You have bad taste in music if you attended this show.

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