On Monday, Oct. 14, the California based pop-rock band Joyce Manor performed a 45-minute set in the WLFM House. Opening for them was rapper BRAVEPrince, also known as senior Wasonu “Frog” Allen, who hails from Atlanta, Georgia. Even though the show took place on a Monday night, there was an excellent turn out — the WLFM kitchen and living room were packed shoulder-to-shoulder with enthusiastic onlookers eager to dance by the time Joyce Manor took the stage.
Originally formed in 2008, Joyce Manor consists of lead guitarist and vocalist Barry Johnson, guitarist Chase Knobbe, bassist Matt Ebert and drummer Pat Ware. Over the last ten years, the band has gained significant popularity, boasting over 100,000 Spotify followers and almost 60,000 Instagram followers. Johnson mentioned after the concert that they had not played a house show since 2013, as they now usually find themselves playing much larger venues — the WLFM house members were honored to have been their first in such a long time. The band jostled for performance space in the front room of WLFM house, hung out in a student’s bedroom as a makeshift “green room,” and sold merch from the cold porch outside.
Before Joyce Manor took the stage, Allen got the crowd hyped up with several original pieces, including his latest release, “Live Like This,” which dropped two weeks ago. Even though he was coming straight from football practice, Allen put on an excellent show, instructing dance moves to the audience, and cracking jokes in between songs. However, after his set, he did admit that he had to go straight to bed, for which — given the rigorous daily grind of the average Lawrentian — he could certainly not be blamed.
A new-found energy instantly shrouded the room once Joyce Manor jumped into their first song — it was fast-paced, guitar heavy and punk enough to inspire intense head-banging from most of the audience. It was also extremely loud, which is to be expected from a house show, but a number of people did have to pop in earplugs. For the first two songs, Johnson had his back to the audience, which he later explained was because in his experience, DIY shows tended to get so rowdy that people in the crowd, in the haze of dancing, would come crashing into the performers. Luckily, while a mosh pit did break out a few times, it only happened safely behind the barrier that was formed by the kitchen counter, and the crowd gave the performers ample space to perform.
One such mosh pit came into fruition when the band played their most popular song, “Constant Headache.” The song is extremely catchy with muted power chords backing the verses and a full-on outbreak of drums, guitar and bass by the time the chorus comes around. Quite a few members of the crowd sang along to the lyrics, which were angsty yet honest, ringing especially true on a weeknight in college.
Band Booking Committee is already working hard in preparation for the next house show and brainstorming long-term ideas for the many future shows and events to come. To stay posted, follow @lu.bandbooking on Instagram.
To listen to Joyce Manor, check out @JoyceManor on Spotify.
To listen to BRAVEPrince, search for @froggy0125 on Soundcloud.