A few months ago, I learned one of the most devastating pieces of news I had heard in a very long time. Before I get to that news, let me rewind back to a few years ago. My sophomore year of high school, my brother’s band had put on a show at my school with a very special headliner for such a small area. I had heard of this band before, but had never really given them a fair chance. Once this band hit the stage (or the floor, since it was in the cafeteria), I was mesmerized. I had never seen such devotion and passion packed into one live set before that night. This band knew how to put on a show and put on a show right while also performing their instruments flawlessly. This band was lesser-known Saginaw, Michigan-based Your Best Friend, and since that night I have seen this band live on 20+ occasions and am still amazed by their live show to this day. Now, fast forward to a few months ago. I sat alone, in complete shock as I learned the news that this band that had brought so many fantastic memories attached to some fantastic times had decided to call it quits. So, as a last hurrah for Your Best Friend, I am dedicating this week’s 3 Of The Week to them. Even though they are breaking up, check out these songs and go even further to their whole catalog. I can assure you there is something you will enjoy.
1. “The Path of an Illogical Liar”
A classic YBF song, “The Path of an Illogical Liar” tells the story of an old friend of guitarist/vocalist/pianist John Bonham and how this friend had betrayed him. The precise guitar work of Bonham and then guitarist Steve Sochanek perplexes me to this day and the all-over-the-place drumming of Nick Edler will wow any lover of the sticks. Now the version above is a raw demo version of the song, so I advise you look up the song on iTunes for a much cleaner, well-produced listen.
2. “Near Perfect Wrists”
This song would be an Emo classic if it were ever to hit the big leagues. With lyrics like “Your open arms embrace me/But my open wound’s still bleeding” along with the repeated line of “I will make you proud again/If I could just save myself” justify that statement. Bonham’s keys along with some well-placed bells by Edler add some charm to the song while prominent power chords and backing vocals during the chorus add the ‘umph’ a song like this needs. Though the strength in this song lies in the bridge in which Sochanek softly croons “I’ve waited alone/For eighteen years now/This is how I wanna grow up/I don’t need anyone at all” with some choice words of Bonham layering the vocal emotion until it crescendos to the end as the song fades with some chilling whoa-oh-oh’s.
3. “Setting Sail”
Lastly, I took the liberty of saving this band’s best song and crowning moment to finish this list. “Setting Sail” lies on the band’s latest release, a three song EP titled (Re)Mission that will remain as this band’s last material ever, and the band’s growth as musicians and people in general are evident here. The call-and-return between Bonham and present guitarist/vocalist Steve Colyer emerges as a breathtaking battle of anger and loss. Bonham comes out of this battle as the victor as his raw vocals blast through the rest of the music and become the focal point of a beautifully chaotic song. Especially towards the end as he yells “So long old friend/Please forgive me/As we throw you out into the sea/And you can just save yourself.” And as Colyer and bassist/vocalist Dale Brown repeat those final six words over and over along with Bonham to conclude the song, it becomes clear that this final moment concludes the legacy of Your Best Friend.
RIP Your Best Friend. You guys gave me some of the best nights of my life.