When you’ve been a fan of an artist for years and they decide to go on a hiatus, it’s almost like you’re living in a purgatory state where you never know when a new song will be released, a new album will be announced, or (god forbid) a goodbye letter to their adoring fans stating that the hiatus will be permanent. When Boys Like Girls (AKA my third favorite band ever in the world) announced that they would be doing an anniversary tour for their self-titled debut, I was totally ready to buy a plane ticket to the East Coast to see them as they had not originally included a California date for the tour. I’ve been a fan the Boston-based quartet since I saw them open for The All-American Rejects back in their Move Along days and I pretty much wanted all of my high school boyfriends to look like Martin Johnson. The anniversary wasn’t a complete surprise with their current popularity in the pop-punk/emo community, but it was still very exciting to get an official announcement that us longtime fans would be able to belt out to the songs of Boys Like Girls once more.
The opening act was the Los Angeles based acapella mashup group The Old Fashioned. While they played a few original tracks, the majority of their set consisted of Top 40 mashups, which included an emo themed portion that featured parts of BLG’s hits. For a band that performed 95% covers, they really got the crowd singing, dancing and overall pumped up for the band that we were all waiting for.
I had already seen Boys Like Girls play 4 times before the anniversary show and had never been disappointed. Once they hit the stage with the album’s opening song “The Great Escape”, every member’s energy was sky high and was like they never took their hiatus. Boys Like Girls kept a steady pace in their energy levels throughout their set and they certainly weren’t going to let it fall during their ballads either. Ironically, “Hero/Heroine” and “Thunder” created the most crowd unity between the fans. It was almost as if we all knew that we needed to cherish every breath and note that was coming from the stage because we didn’t know when we would get another opportunity to re-live the moment with them again.
Getting to hear not only their hits, but also songs that they didn’t get to play live on their past tours (“Up Against The Wall”, “Holiday”, “Learning To Fall”) was very much needed for longtime fans of Boys Like Girls. Of course, they didn’t just leave us with only songs from their first album. Their encore performance featured tracks from Love Drunk and got the crowd even more stoked than they already were. They even brought in Drew Rayann of The Old Fashioned took over for Taylor Swift‘s part in “Two Is Better Than One” to give support to their opening act. They ended their anniversary show in the only acceptable way that they could, with encore of “The Great Escape” and the reminder to make your life the adventure that you deserve.
Seeing one of your favorite bands live is always a treat. It’s even more of a treat when you get to see one of your favorite bands when they haven’t performed in years. Seeing Boys Like Girls again really took the audience back in time to when life was much simpler for us. In a way, it was therapeutic getting to relive these songs as a twentysomething as they are definitely more relatable and more anthemic than hearing them as a teen. I was kind of hoping (ok, maybe a lot hoping) that they would play us a new song and announce that they would be working on a new album to be released next year, but in the world of music beggars can’t be choosers. I absolutely enjoyed my experience getting to see them play their entire debut and I’m crossing my fingers that this 5th time seeing them won’t be the last.