Who: Bastille, Joywave
Where: Daily’s Place Amphitheater, Jacksonville, Florida
When: October 26, 2019
Following the release of their highly anticipated third album, British alternative rock band Bastille finally came back to North America and has spent the past 2 months on a 31 show headline tour, playing to various cities across the continent. And one of their last stops on this lengthy tour was in Jacksonville, Florida.
Their fans came out in droves for this show, a few arriving to queue as early as 8 in the morning, and some have even been following the tour around for several shows across the country. Many showcased their creative talents, by making various signs and flags to hold up during the show, and a few even designing their own handmade merch to wear!
The supporting band, Joywave, was quite possibly one of the best openers I’ve seen in a while. Dressed in matching outfits, from the hi-vis shirts, down to the sparkly shoes, they immediately captured the crowd’s attention. And they easily held it throughout their entire performance, from their charming stage presence to their extremely catchy songs.
Daniel Armbruster, the lead vocalist of Joywave, kept a constant banter with the audience. The most notable aspect of this was when they neared the end of their song “Tongues“. Instead of leading into the infectious chorus, they faked the crowd out, cutting it short to bring Dan Smith of Bastille onstage. Dressed similarly to Joywave (though not exactly, he had foil around his shoes instead of actual sparkly loafers), Smith, alongside Joywave, performed a rather comical cover of “Break Stuff” by Jacksonville’s own, Limp Bizkit. Armbruster called it “a special piece of local culture”.
Now, with minutes until the main act hits the stage, the energy in the venue is electric. The lights go out, and Bastille’s onscreen visuals fire up, showing an old curtain being pulled back while a timer counts up to midnight. The band comes out onstage, heads straight into performing the leading single “Quarter Past Midnight” off their new album, and the crowd goes wild.
At one point in the set, the band explains the theme and inspiration behind their new album, Doom Days. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, this album takes place over the course of one night, explains lead vocalist Dan Smith. The album’s all about escapism, and the fears we all face in 2019, ranging from being glued to social media to worry about the next election. And what better song to encapsulate all that than the title track off the album? “Doom Days” was clearly a crowd favorite, with Smith encouraging everyone to sing along with the lyrics plastered on the big screen behind him.
The energy of the fans in the audience could only be matched by Smith, as he jumps, leaps, and runs across the stage throughout almost every song. The best example of this was when they performed their old song “Of The Night“. Despite being late in the set, the moment the band started to hint at what they were gonna play next, a wave of excitement rushed through the crowd as bassist Will Farquarson explained what the crowd was to do during this song. Everyone gets down to the ground, and once the chorus drops, jump and dance as crazy as possible if we’d be so kind to do so.
With the digital clock onstage ticking up, it’s finally morning in the band’s post-apocalyptic world, and unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. Lucky for us, the ending of this show tied the evening together perfectly. Bastille thanks everyone for coming out to the show, and closes the night out with their hit song “Pompeii“. As an added bonus, they brought all of Joywave back out to help perform it. It was quite the finale, as every person in the venue, both on and off stage, sang along to every word, and drummed every beat.
Post and photos by Taylor Pettitt
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