The show was so emotional it was almost poetic. Senses Fail is no longer a Knitting Factory-sized band, but their set translates so well to a Knitting Factory-sized venue. It was purely insane with energy and the band was nearly flawless. Even minus ex-bassist Mike Gilta, who announced his departure from the band on December 8th. Jason Black from Hot Water Music fame filled in and nailed the bass. With all the commotion and intense flair of the show, no one even noticed the difference.
Singer Buddy Nielsen, with his massive head of hair, a too-tight cut off t-shirt, and some long shorts was pure dynamite. He eagerly invited kids to jump on stage and show their moves as they stylishly jumped off. As kids flew in the air toward the band, they were either met with an embrace as a long lost brother, head-locked and forced in front of the mic, or quickly pushed, shoved or tossed right back into the crowd. It all depended on Buddy’s whim and just which intense feeling he happened to be feeling at the moment. The stage flips and somersaults were pretty He made himself no stranger to the crowd, and dove right into the massive sweaty sea of people repeatedly during the set.
They didn’t play one of their fan favorites, “Steven” but no one seemed to notice as they blasted through “The Rapture”, “Calling All Cars”, “Buried A Lie” (aka Dr. Dave), and “Rum is For Drinking, Not For Burning”. It’s mind-blowing to see the band’s intensity and rabid feelings while they play songs they’ve been playing for over five years. It’s as if the song and the feelings are new every time.
The set was short, clocking in at just under an hour, but it was long enough to work the crowd into a messy frenzy. Everyone in the front was getting slammed with bodies flying from the stage, but loving every minute of it. The back of the room was singing along, wide eyed and just as stoked. The band played no encore, but there was really no need. As steam rose from the crowded room, kids eagerly chanted for “one more song”, but to no avail. It didn’t matter much since there really is no proper follow up to “One Eight Seven” anyway.
The band mentioned being in the midst of writing a new album to follow up 06’s “Still Searching”. There’s an eager crowd waiting, so bring it on.