A Brand New End: On the Foreshadowed Breakup of Emo’s Mightiest

brandnewbyowenpritchard

The year 2015 has been a great year for Brand New fans. First of all, Deja Entendu was re-released on vinyl, as a special edition with a special sleeve, the band went on tour, dropped a new single, and have played another new unrecorded single at some of their live shows. Right now, the tour is winding down and lately the front man, Jesse Lacey, has been increasingly talkative at shows, and his speeches are growing more sentimental. Recently, he announced that his wife, Andrea is six months pregnant with their first child, and at another show just the other day, Jesse made an announcement saying, “I’m gonna tell you right here right now, this isn’t going to last much longer. But it’s been so special for so long. And for as long as it does last, we’re just so grateful for you being here.” The future of Brand New has been hanging in the balance since they released their fourth album, Daisy. None of the fans really knew what direction Brand New was going in, but the “Daisy Sessions” somewhat curbed the appetite for more material and interaction with the band.

I have been a fan of Brand New since I was in high school. However, my first experience listening to Brand New was when I was in middle school, and I was sitting in my room listening to the Detroit based Rock/Alternative radio station, 89X. They played the track “The Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows”, and I stopped what I was doing and just stood in my room and listened, and from then I was hooked. I would turn the name of that song over in my mind and think about it. Though I didn’t know the words, something about it stuck in my brain. A few years later I had a similar experience. I was in my room listening to Pandora radio, and “Mix Tape” came on, and I immediately favorited the song and went on to listen to some of Deja. I had never before connected with a band so strongly. By my final year of high school, Brand New was on constant rotation, and Brand New became a part of me in a way- they were the band that paralleled my struggles as a teenager, and even now as I enter my 20’s.

It seems as though the progress of Brand New coincided with the progress that I made as a young adult. A few weeks ago my boyfriend was teasing me and said “what are you going to do if Jesse stops being sad?” I laughed and said, “I don’t know, but they would probably break up.” In my own selfish way, I almost wanted Jesse to remain sad, so that the band could continue to exist. Then I realized I was being childish and selfish because true fans will support an artist’s life decisions that make the artist happy, even if that means that there will be no further work/material to admire.

Brand New fans, myself included, will just have to wait to see what happens. Perhaps we will get a final album and a farewell tour, but maybe we won’t. Whatever happens, we will cherish the past 15 years of Brand New. Our sad boys have turned to men and the time has come to let them go. Brand New fans will send off their favorite band in the best way possible, blasting their music and singing along. Most of all, we will carry their music with us and remember that Brand New isn’t really gone, they’re just happy, and now it is our turn to experience happiness and keep the blood in our heads, and our feet on the ground. (Konstantina Buhalis)

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