By Brian Ossip, DC Music Live
Almost 10 years after the release of Ocean Avenue, Yellowcard are still rocking as hard as ever.
Taking the stage at Rams Head Live! In Baltimore, the pop-punk band showed that despite having been around for almost a decade, have undergone lineup changes and a brief hiatus, their brand of catchy and up-tempo music has not gone out of style.
Opening the show with “Awakening” off of their latest album, Southern Air, the diverse crowd instantly went nuts, jumping and dancing around while a large pit formed in the center.
Over the next hour and a half the group rocked through their hits and some deeper album cuts from each of their last five albums. Crowd favorites “Lights and Sounds,” “Way Away,” and “Only One” were met with extreme enthusiasm, and around 1,400 voices singing in unison.
In the middle of the set, guitarist Ryan Mendez, bassist Josh Portman, and violinist Sean Mackin exited the stage, leaving only drummer Longineu Parsons III and singer/guitarist Ryan Key. The duo performed an acoustic version of Mumford & Sons’ hit “I Will Wait,” a song that, despite the obvious difference in style, was well received by the crowd.
After finishing their set with “Southern Air,” the band returned for a three-song encore that served to whip the crowd into an even
greater frenzy. After opening with the slower, beautiful song “Sing for Me,” the band launched in to “Here I Am Alive,” quite possibly the catchiest song off of Southern Air. Joining them onstage was Tay Jardine, lead singer of opener We Are The In Crowd, who also appeared on the record.
And to close out the show was, not surprisingly, “Ocean Avenue,” far and away Yellowcard’s biggest hit to-date, and the song that launched their careers nine years ago. As if the crowd wasn’t already energetic enough, when the first guitar strums of this song began, a whole new level of excitement took over the venue.
As the song finished up and the band exited the stage, the crowd stood around hoping for a chance at one more song. And while slowly exiting the venue, the looks and expressions on every kids face made it clear that after almost ten years as a band, Yellowcard, and its fans, have a lot more music and many more years to look forward to.