Show Review: You Me At Six (with Machineheart & Dreamers)

Written and Photographed by Drea Eden

Walking into the familiar venue known as the Bottom Lounge, I found myself buzzing in anticipation of the night to come. I was there to see You Me At Six on their Back Again tour, their first time playing Chicago since 2014. It’s clear that everyone else in the room is just as excited too. Fans new and old gather around the stage and impatiently wait for the show to begin.

MACHINEHEART opens, sparking awe with their psychedelic alt-pop anthems sung in a dreamy soprano voice coming from none other than vocalist Stevie Scott. They took to the stage as if they were headlining, putting on a phenomenal show. They were dancing around and clearly having a great time, engaging everyone in the crowd who swayed and danced along to their beautifully euphoric set.

Later in the night DREAMERS continued the show, after a brief intermission with All Star by Smash Mouth playing in the background, which really got the crowd going. With their charming indie pop sound and energetic performance, they played several of their hits to an adoring crowd who sang along to all of the words.

Finally, it came time for You Me At Six to play their set. The room went silent as the lights dimmed. After a moment, the band walked onto the stage, eliciting cheers from the crowd, the entire room packed with fans of all ages, on the edge of their metaphorical seats as the band launches into Fast Forward, the leading single off of their new album VI. Vocalist Josh Franceschi made sure to bring the energy, dancing around the stage and prompting the crowd to join him and show off their best dance moves, while boasting about his own which he jokingly claimed to have spent hours practicing in front of the mirror.

Throughout the set, You Me At Six effortlessly blended together their nostalgic emo sound with their newer alt-inspired tunes. While playing some of their classic hits such as “Lived a Lie”, “Reckless”, “Room to Breathe”, and “Bite My Tongue” I found myself feeling incredibly nostalgic, and was reminded of exactly why I fell in love with this band in the first place. During their more upbeat recent singles such as “I O U”, “3AM”, and “Straight to my Head” I found myself absolutely enthralled, and was having the literal time of my life, bopping to these upbeat bangers.

With a little bit of cheeky banter and heartwarming smiles, the guys really made the show feel extremely welcoming and made it clear just how much they love what they do. From jokingly telling audience members to leave for not being familiar with their newest album to explaining to all first-time concert goers how an encore works, to telling the emotional background behind a song, Josh kept everyone engaged and listening to his every word. After the latter of these interactions, leading into the song “Take On The World,” He requested that the crew turned off all the lights in the room and asked the audience to light up the stage with their phone lights, which led to an incredibly intimate and beautiful, soul-touching performance of the song that made me feel a deep connection to the song, the band, and the crowd around me.

Overall, this tour is an absolute must-see for anyone looking for a good time with some nostalgic jams. The rest of the Back Again Tour dates are as follows:

3/6   Seattle, WA @Chop Suey

3/7   San Francisco, CA @Great American Music Hall

3/9   San Diego, CA @Music Box

3/10 Pomona, CA @The Glass House

3/11 Los Angeles, CA @Teragram Ballroom

3/13 Houston, TX @House of Blues

3/14 Dallas, TX @Granada Theater

3/16 Atlanta, GA @The Masquerade – Hell  

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