Hawthorne Heights: Aug. 24 at the Wild Buffalo
An urge to revisit my 13-year-old self came over me when I heard Hawthorne Heights were scheduled to play their entire album, The Silence in Black and White, to commemorate its 10th anniversary. The album has peaked at 56 on the Billboard top 200 chart and approximately 816,483 copies have been sold in the U.S. since its release.
I entered the room on Sunday, Aug. 24, feeling like I had walked through some time machine back into the early 2000s – 2004 to be exact. I noticed some MySpace characters the teen me would’ve related to and the adult me couldn’t help but ogle.
The emo, screamo, post-hardcore band took the stage and began to carry out the tradition of simple hooks and large pop-punk choruses.
Chuck Taylors littered the floor and bodies instantly started flailing in an attempt to coordinate some sort of mosh pit. In the time span of three songs, two men were escorted out, wrestling security guards. A woman with square rimmed glasses cried beneath her bangs throughout various songs. I think they were tears of happiness at an emo show.
Although it’s difficult to differentiate some songs about bullets from others about hearts, each track sounded exactly like it did on my Walkman CD player in high school. Their death growls and backing vocals did not disappoint.
Hawthorne Heights ended their set with the album’s hit “Ohio Is for Lovers” and it was everything I’d expected. It seemed to reopen wounds expressed through the crowd’s reactions and emulations of deep screams. When it came to an end, the people dispersed and looked satisfied with their emo fix.
A decade may have elapsed since Hawthorne Heights were at their peak in popularity, but die-hard fans showed no sign of it and neither did the band.
(This reviewer apologizes to the opening bands New Empire and Truth Under Attack for not making it to the show earlier).