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9 Songs We Hope To Hear At When We Were Young

Everyone has that one song they hope to hear from their favorite band at a live show. Sometimes we get lucky and our favorite track is one of their hits, other times our favorite track isn’t as popular. Perhaps a b-side that rarely gets any love on the stage or a tune from an older album that hasn’t seen a spot in the setlist in years. A festival with a line-up as stacked as When We Were Young, there is potential for a load of surprises. Bands and artists tend to get a little weird as festivals.

We crafted a list of songs we are dying to hear this year at When We Were Young. Some are total classics that make for an obvious choice. Others are a whole lot more unlikely to happen, but we can dream, right? Check out our list below and let us know what songs you are dying to hear! 

Say Anything – “The Futile” 

…Is A Real Boy is one of the most iconic debut emo albums in our lifetime. Say Anything delivered a theatrical, melodic odyssey that transformed the blueprint of songwriting through spoken word interludes and drastic sonic changes. Easily considered the band’s most prolific body of work, they still perform many of the tracks to this day. “Alive With The Glory Of Love”, “Every Man Has A Molly”, and “Wow, I Can Get Sexual Too” remain staples in Say Anything’s live set even after all these years.

However, one of the record’s stand out tracks, “The Futile” doesn’t always make the cut in their performances. The first line of the song immediately grabs the attention of everyone in the room and when they do decide to play it, the audience always carries the entire first verse without Max Bemis needing to sing a single line. When he does deliver the vocals, he is overshadowed by a cacophony of fans screaming it louder than him. It is certainly a favorite. Not only do we hope to hear it, but we hope it is their opening song. “SHIT! Nothing makes sense!” is a hell of a way to kick off a set. 

5 Seconds Of Summer – “Good Girls

A band that has transformed over the years from a bubblegum pop-punk outfit, to a fully-fledged pop-rock phenomenon, 5 Seconds Of Summer grew to be a household name in a way that no one really excpected. They proved they weren’t just pretty boys with guitars and matching haircuts, but a carefully crafted group of talented and passionate artists who honed their sound and developed a career of longevity. Number one singles and sold-out arena tours catapulted them to a place of stardom in the Top 40 world, but we still hold a special place in our hearts for the whimsical and juvenile act they once were.

It’s probably a no-brainer that the band will pull out some early bangers from their catalog at When We Were Young given the nature of the festival. “She Looks So Perfect” and “Jet Black Heart” will definitely make the cut in their setlist from that era, but we are really hoping to hear “Good Girls”. The gang vocals practically beg for crowd participation, and we will be there and ready to scream along. 

Read More: 9 Best Theatrical Sets At When We Were Young Fest 2022

Pierce The Veil – “Besitos

The return of Pierce The Veil this year was something we all needed but didn’t quite expect after a seven year hiatus. Perhaps it had something to do with their explosion of popularity on TikTok with “King For A Day” last year. Suddenly the younger generation was exposed to their unique sound and explosive presence that once dominated the scene. Their resurgence of relevance perhaps prompted a fresh revival, and now we are getting them back on stage. They always play a nice mix of songs from each of their records, especially highlighting tunes from their third studio album Collide With The Sky, but we want to hear a specific track from their sophomore album Selfish Machines.

Besitos”, the opening track to the record, arguably has one of the most legendary and badass moments from any of their early songs. “A diamond bullet and a gun made of gold / She was covered in blood last seen in San Francisco” is delivered right before a wild guitar solo and breakdown. Of course we are excited to hear some of the new songs live too, but it would be absolutely incredible to get treated with this throwback anthem. 

Waterparks – “Watch What Happens Next” 

Just when we thought Waterparks couldn’t possibly top themselves after their 2018 sophomore album Entertainment, they proved us violently wrong with their 2019 follow-up, FANDOM. Plausibly garnered their most cohesive and impressive body of work to date, the album’s introductory single “Watch What Happens Next” remains one of the band’s triumphs, especially in the lyrical department. A call out track to everything wrong with the music industry, it is clever and audacious to say the least.

With phrases like “Everyone is sad when bands break up / Well, guess guess guess guess what? / They’re defeated as fuck / Shamed out of money / By their own culture” it not only takes a stab at labels, but also fans overcome by parasocial relationships and unnatural expectations. It moved the needle for Waterparks, showing they were capable of not only whip-smart love songs and relatable, self-deprecating narratives, but also something a lot more clever.

Movements – “Nineteen

Movements gave us a magnificent new album this year. RUCKUS! is somewhat of a departure in sound from their previous releases, exploring new themes, vocal deliveries, and sonic palettes. A beautifully well-rounded record, they have shown their ability to grow and change while remaining true to their roots. We totally hope to hear some of the new songs like “Tightrope” and “Lead Pipe” at When We Were Young. We also are extremely confident we’ll get a batch of songs from their 2017 full-length, Feel Something, as it is their most popular release. However, eight years ago they came onto the scene with their Fearless Records debut EP, Outgrown Things. The EP holds up today.

Movements took the overarching genre of melodic hardcore and added many unique elements, making them a striking new addition to the scene. “Nineteen” was the first song that showed fans they have a knack for adding spoken-word, poem-like verses to their music. It set them apart from many other bands in their camp. Even though it is a deepcut they haven’t performed in a while, we really hope to hear it live at the festival. 

Good Charlotte – “Little Things

Good Charlotte were one of a few alternative acts to break out of the barrier of the underground scene and reach a mainstream audience in the early 2000’s. There was a time when songs like “I Don’t Wanna Be In Love” and “Like It’s Her Birthday” were in heavy rotation on the radio. Even before that, tracks such as “The Anthem” and “Lifestyles Of The Rich & Famous” were staples in many coming-of-age movie soundtracks. Kings of the MySpace era, they were a face for the outcasts and rejects. Their sophomore album The Young and The Hopeless put them on the map with a slew of successful singles, but their debut album was iconic in its own right.

The Self-Titled record introduced their “fuck you” attitude to the world and was certainly nothing to sneeze at. It charted on Billboard and boasted one of their best songs. “Little Things” was Good Charlotte’s first ever single, and surfaced as the perfect foundation to everything they would become. A tune that served as the soundtrack to learning how to do a kickflip or smoking your first cigarette, it provides a nice dose of nostalgia to the millennial generation. We NEED to hear it live at When We Were Young Fest, it only feels appropriate. 

Read More: Green Day Teases Show Ahead Of When We Were Young Fest

Kenny Hoopla – “hollywood sucks//

KennyHoopla is one of the mainstay artists leading the recent pop-punk revival. He has his own unique approach, meshing post-punk with a new wave edge. Refined production and gritty vocal effects gives his sonic soundscape a timeless feel, something that could be brand new or 20 years old. It is drenched in nostalgia. He exploded into the scene in 2021 with his album SURVIVORS GUILT: THE MIXTAPE//, giving pop punk fans a fresh and exciting take on the Machine Gun Kelly inspired resurrection of the genre. A little more edge, a little less polish, it feels genuine and authentic. The Travis Barker protege made some serious waves.

The obvious choice here is his single “estella//”, however, “hollywood sucks//” is a catchy, tongue-in-cheek track that is full of attitude. It covers all the bases of what KennyHoopla does best. “Hollywood sucks / Can you please move your Prius? / You are not fucking Jesus / He hates L.A.” is an incredibly simple yet effective chorus. If you’ve ever lived in L.A., you truly appreciate this sentiment. The song is also simply kickass. Fingers crossed we get this one on the setlist. 

The Academy Is… – “About a Girl” 

A band that seemingly came and went in the blink of an eye, The Academy Is… made a wild impact on the scene in their few short years as a group. While they were technically only a band for three years, they managed to release three albums in that time. Discovered by Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy and signed to Fueled By Ramen, they released Almost Here in 2005, Santi in 2007, and of course, Fast Times At Barrington High in 2008. They’ve been pretty dormant for the last decade, resurfacing every once in a while to drop a single or two.

The fact that they are getting back together to play When We Were Young is super exciting. Looks like we will have to dig out our V-neck shirts, checkered vans, and side-swiped bangs for this one. They have a long list of bangers, but we want to hear “About A Girl” because it wouldn’t be The Academy Is… without that song. We can’t wait to be transported back to our youth with their performance. 

The Veronicas – “Untouched” 

Twin sisters, Lisa and Jessica Origliasso exploded into the electropop world under the alias of The Veronicas in the early 2000’s. It may seem a bit unusual that they are on the bill for a predominantly pop-punk festival, but it actually makes a lot of sense with the right context. Around the years of 2006-2009, the subgenre of neon pop-punk was ruling the underground. Bands like Cobra Starship, 3OH!3, Cash Cash, and Hellogoodbye were the frontrunners of the alternative space.

The Veronicas were totally adjacent to this, and leaned just slightly more pop. This allowed them to break into the mainstream, landing on everyone’s ipod nano’s, not just the scene kids. Artists like Metro Station, The Pretty Reckless, and Ryan Cabrera all supported The Veronicas on tour back in the day. Their most popular single, “Untouched” was a radio hit, reaching number seventeen on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. We are 100% sure they will play this track at When We Were Young, so get ready with your shutter shades and racoon tail hair extensions. 

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