The Lovely Little Lonely Tour

by: Nicole Juliette Hetlyn

"It's about a number you can't explain, but you don't really have to because the people you love already feel it too." -The Maine about 8123

The Lovely Little Lonely tour recently came to Birmingham, and it was an incredible evening. The Orphan, The Poet started us off on the right note. Hailing from Dayton, Ohio, this rock/alternative band brought lots of energy to the stage.  Vocalist/guitarist, David Eselgroth, has a smooth voice and knows how to get the crowd singing, dancing, and ready to go.  TOTP played several songs from their latest release, Terrible Things, an EP which we highly recommend.  TOTP ended their set with David jumping into the crowd and singing a little Marcy Playground mixed into one of their songs, definitely a good time.

Up next, labelmates and longtime friends of the Maine, Beach Weather.  I love the cheerfulness and vibe that they give off, they can instantly get the crowd dancing along.  This pop/rock band fronted by Nick Santino, released their EP Chit Chat last year.  They played several of our favorite songs, including the title track.  Whether people knew of Beach Weather or not prior, everyone found themselves singing along to the catchy, feel-good songs.

The Maine.  THE MAINE.  I can’t even begin to express how incredible they are.  The Maine were my first concert 8 years ago, and they somehow manage to get better every single show (how is that possible?).  Lovely Little Lonely was released last month, and being the band’s sixth album, a tour was necessary.  The whole atmosphere was astonishing. The stage was set with fluffy clouds that were slightly lit up, lights that subtly looked like raindrops, and roses on the guitar amps. Such a beautiful stage, and it really set the tone for the show.  This show (as well as many others) was sold out and had fans of all ages, new and old, that were all so in love with music.  The true “8123” community.  I even made some amazing new friends.  The guys did an amazing job creating the welcoming environment that they strive for, we were all ready to have fun together.

The set-list was a great mixture of old and new songs, including all of our favorites.  It’s so hard to even pick a favorite performance, the show was that damn good.  Some favorite performances were “Am I Pretty?”, “My Heroine”, “We All Roll Along”, and “Right Girl.”  The crowd was definitely singing and dancing along to all of these.  It was such a nostalgic set.  These are songs that I listened to from high school through college into the real world.  I was still just as excited to sing every word at the top of my lungs.  Favorite new songs that they performed would be “Black Butterflies & Déjà Vu,” “Lost In Nostalgia,” and “Do You Remember.”  In all honesty, Lovely Little Lonely is my favorite Maine album so far.  Hearing these songs live re-assured how much I already love them.

If you’ve ever been to a Maine show, you know that the highlight is “Girls Do What They Want.”  All of a sudden, John jumps into the crowd, and stands in the middle of a group of girls.  “Phones away.. Put your phones and cameras away.  I want you to remember this without your phones and to live in the moment.”  The Maine plays “Girls Do What They Want” and John sings and dances with the crowd.  Everyone is living in the moment, having the time of their life.  Towards the end of the song, John brings a guy on the stage.  “Brandon. Baby B! Brand-o!”  John gives this guy Brandon about a dozen nicknames, jokes around with him (while his girlfriend takes video from the crowd).  The mic is now handed off to Brandon to finish off the lyrics “girls do what they want, boys do what they can!”  It is a party all around, and even John is amazed by Brandon’s energy.

If you have the chance to check out this tour, I would highly recommend it.  All three bands put their heart and energy into giving you an unforgettable night.  You can also catch the Maine on tour later this summer with Dashboard Confessional and the All-American Rejects.  Be sure to pick up a copy of Lovely Little Lonely.  It's a solid records with chilling vocal, catchy riffs, and lyrics that hit home.  Ten years later, the lyrics still have a special place in my heart: “8123 means everything to me.”

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