The Front Bottoms / GDP / Youngman Grand - Live in Brooklyn (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

The Front Bottoms / GDP / Youngman Grand

Live in Brooklyn (2015)

live show

Emo has a new leader and his name is Brian Sella. Watching him lead The Front Bottoms’ sold out crowd Monday night showed he is almost ready for the title.

Opener Youngman Grand was an interesting choice for the bill. If you identify as an emo jam band fan, then they are an emo jam band for you. Next up was GDP, a New Jersey rapper who either realized no one wanted to see him or thought he was amazing despite it. He was sloppy and didn’t do much to sell the crowd on his brand of lazy rapping except tell them to buy his merch. GDP and TFB put out a split earlier this year, so it’s not necessarily surprising he was there, but yikes. If you’re reading this and have ever thought, “I could be a rapper!” this guy proves maybe you can. Oh, and he likes weed.

Finally, The Front Bottoms took the stage to a bubble machine and giant T F B blow-ups. They almost looked surprised at the size of the Brooklyn crowd a.k.a. The Front Bottoms Motorcycle Club. The crowd was not afraid to show the love, singing every word to every song. At one point, they even beat the band to the opening of “Au Revoir (Adios).” While Sella looked almost frustrated at that moment, it didn’t last.

A third of the way through their set, the band announced they had signed to Fueled By Ramen (which makes perfect sense) and their new full length would be out sometime in the fall. They played a new song titled “Cough It Out” which was slower and folkier, the only time in the hour and a half set the crowd looked anxious. But, if last night proves anything, they’ll come around to it. The set ended with “Twin Size Mattress” as balloons were dropped and tambourines were handed out to the front rows. When Sella suggested they “maybe shake a tambourine,” the crowd responded to his request happily—as they had all night.

The experience was reminiscent of watching Say Anything’s Max Bemis when I was in high school. He was a born performer in a transitional time when the crowds were getting bigger and somewhat younger. Like Bemis, Sella owned the room with his sing-alongs about lost love and failure, and the room responded as if they had been through it with him. Their new album seems likely to catapult them into another level of stardom other Fueled By Ramen acts such as Paramore and Panic! At the Disco have enjoyed. If they can turn it into Fall Out Boy success remains to be seen. But The Front Bottoms are sure as hell ready to try.

Stray thoughts:
- TFB drummer Matthew Uychich absolutely killed it, bashing the hell out of his drums all night long.
- “Dancing Tony” was there. Apparently the 50-something-year-old “Mayor of Fun” sells good mozzarella. Still, it seemed odd that a man of his age would be shoving sixteen-year-olds in a most pit, but, hey, everyone had fun so whatever.