To promote their new album, “Daisy,” alternative rock band Brand New embarked on a U.S. tour for six months. Every time Brand New comes to town, fans anticipate a promising experience. Whether frontman Jesse Lacey plays “Degausser” twice halfway through the set and storms off early or plays old favorites in an encore, something intriguing and unexpected is bound to occur.
So after being shoved around for 30 minutes in an annoying crowd, I finally made my way near the front as Brand New was about to begin. They started with “You Won’t Know,” a song that comes in softly, then hits the chorus hard with energy. The fans surrounding me were singing so loudly that I could hardly hear Lacey. Despite the solid sound, the band didn’t seem too into it, which isn’t unusual, as their emotions really tend to come out in more recent songs.
The first number they played off “Daisy” was “Vices,” their most aggressive song. I was sure Lacey would go bonkers! But the band looked almost bored, which perplexed me. When they finished their set and exited the stage, the lights came on immediately before the crowd could even think to chant “One more song!” Is this it? No encore? No emotion?
I hate to say it, but I wished that Lacey had been miserable. At least then we would have witnessed some raw emotion or maybe even seen him throw his guitar at the drum set as he has in the past.
I wondered if he was too happy to let his melancholy songs affect him. This was not the Jesse Lacey that fans have come to know. I was hoping to have something to talk about with my friends who missed the show. But now, all I can say is that they played and performed well – good for a music fan, but disappointing for a longtime Brand New fan.