Year 6, Day 37: Bayside – Bayside
- Hello Shitty
- Devotion and Desire
- Tortures of the Damned
- They Looked Like Strong Hands
- Blame It on Bad Luck
- We’ll Be OK
- Existing in a Crisis (Evelyn)
- Don’t Call Me Peanut
- Half a Life
- Dear Tragedy
About the Album
Bayside is the self-titled second studio album from New York based pop punk band, Bayside. The album was released on August 23rd 2005 through Victory Records.
Thoughts on the Album
Down to the final few albums left for this year. I remember hearing Bayside‘s Devotion and Desire on the EA Sports game MVP 06: NCAA Baseball. EA Sports went with the Victory Records label to reflect the change from professional to collegiate baseball, thanks to a their loss of the third party publishing rights to Major League Baseball video games. Anyway, Devotion and Desire was one of my favorite songs off that soundtrack. One of the things about New York, where Bayside is from, is that it is an incredibly fertile ground for musical talent. Bayside sounds like they were assembled in either a secret government lab or factory somewhere with parts from other bands like Brand New, Alkaline Trio, and Taking Back Sunday.
The album opens with the short and quick, Hello Shitty. As the shortest song on the album, there is no need for more. It’s sharp, punchy, and to the point. This pace leads right into the lead single and the aforementioned, Devotion and Desire. Devotion and Desire is the strongest track on the album, highlighted by excellent musicianship and instrumental work. Both the guitar and drum work on this song and throughout the album are excellent. The track, Tortures of the Damned features some of frontman Anthony Raneri‘s best and most eloquent lyricism.
If only I had an axe, I’d sever the ties I’ve made with this world
The track Don’t Call Me Peanut, is one of the band’s finest acoustic ballads. And while it’s more the band’s trademarked brand of fast-paced, in-your-face, riff-induced pop punk that skyrocketed them into the spotlight, it doesn’t take a whole lotta heart to appreciate the emotion found on Don’t Call Me Peanut. On the other side, Montauk wins the “best riffage” award, plus it features some of the best use of vocal distortion. Then there’s They Looked Like Strong Hands, a song that slows down the tempo and momentum a bit. It’s slower, less aggressive, but still brings the heat. It’s soaring 6/8 time chorus is where it succeeds. Blame It on Bad Luck starts off in a similar fashion, though with a marching snare drum beat. The slow beat gives way a bluesy verse and chorus that is rather upbeat.
Like most pop punk albums, there is a dip mid album and the first half is way stronger than the second. But Bayside‘s self-titled opus is an incredibly strong one. It’s also a rather refreshing take on the emo-punk/emo-pop genre where there’s no screaming just for the sake of screaming. Bayside, lyrically, is incredibly strong. It’s an album that shines like a diamond amidst a sea of landmines.