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Bayside rocks Campus Center Ballroom for Haiti

By Angela Razzano
On April 16, 2010

   The lights dimmed as the crowd's anticipation of the pop-rock performance of Bayside grew at the Campus Center Ballroom last Wednesday.

   With more than 150 students in attendance, the concert put on by the student group Students for Live Music helped raise $3,725 to benefit Haiti. This was accomplished with the help of the Student Association and their funding to have the band play on campus.

   The Long Island-based band, recently signed to the Wind-Up Records label, played an energetic fifteen-song set beginning with the track "Tortures of the Damned" from their self-titled 2005 album.

   The crowd responded enthusiastically to the opener, and their excitement only increased as the band ripped through a frantic set that included tracks pulled mostly from their self-titled album, 2007's "The Walking Wounded," and their latest release, 2008's "Shudder."

   When asked what direction the band tried to go in with "Shudder," their latest album, vocalist Anthony Raneri said, "we try to figure out what the best part of our band is and magnify it."

   Raneri told the Albany Student Press that Bayside has probably played in Albany over 50 times, with performances at Valentine's and Clifton Park's Northern Lights.

    "Blame it on Bad Luck," the fourth song in Bayside's set, was a high point for the band. It kept the crowd moving and singing along as Anthony Raneri sang softly, "Pound my knuckles hard against the floor/My head against the wall." Lead guitarist Jack O'Shea played a staccato melody and bassist Nick Ghanbarian and drummer Chris Guglielmo kept up a strong back beat.

   Bayside softened its sound slightly as Raneri performed "Don't Call Me Peanut" solo before speeding up again for its last few songs, which they played without stopping until the end of the set.

   The crowd vigorously chanted "one more song" until the band re-entered the stage to play their 2005 single, "Devotion and Desire."

   "I know the spark inside your eyes/Was just the match I used to set myself on fire," Raneri wailed above the cheers of the crowd and the raucous, rapid-pace backing melodies.

   As the fists pumped and the heads bobbed, Bayside ended its set on a powerful, triumphant note, which even inspired some crowd surfing from the students.

   Gabriel the Marine, an indie pop-rock band from Nassau, New York, preceded Bayside with tracks from their EP and their full-length album to be released in August. The crowd swayed to their soft and soothing melodies as the singer, guitarists, bassist, drummer and the violinist played.

   The unsigned band is scheduled to play at Bamboozle this summer.

   The Knee Benders, a UAlbany student band, put on an exciting upbeat performance to start off the show. They encouraged crowd participation and skanking as members of the band stepped down from the stage to join the crowd. Their cover of Streetlight Manifesto's "Keasbey Nights" kept the crowd dancing and singing as the ska band played the drums, guitar, trumpet, trombone and tuba.

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