A highly anticipated return happened this Saturday night at the Woodward Theater. Cincinnati’s own Bad Veins played their first show in two and a half years and made it clear that they are back and better than ever.
The last time I saw Bad Veins was on Valentine’s Day in 2014. I was a junior in high school and my best friends and I forced one of our dads to drive us to Cincinnati in one of the worst snow storms I’d ever experienced. It was hardcore. And it was fantastic. Despite the fact that there wasn’t a blizzard or heart shaped balloons, this show was no different in that Bad Veins exuded the same energy they always have.
Local band Marr gave the night a dreamy start and impressed with a unique sound and especially strong lead vocals. Moonbeau, another new Cincy band, followed and picked up the pace with their sugary sweet songs that got the crowd moving. The on-stage chemistry between Claire and Christian, the band’s two vocalists, was tangible and made for an even more dynamic set.
The audience was buzzing while Bad Veins prepared to take the stage. I saw many familiar faces in the crowd, all of whom were just as excited as I was to see what the band had in store. As soon as the first song started, the audience rocked with energy. Beginning with a new tune, Bad Veins wasted no time showing off what they’ve been working on over the past couple of years. The song carried the same nostalgic BV feel but radiated a new and refreshing fervor. Front man, Ben Davis, wowed from the start despite illness, powering through and delivering an extraordinary performance. One of the highlights of the night included a new electronic ballad called “Crazy.” The band also premiered a new song that exhibited the edgier side of Bad Veins with a heavier riff and rocking vocals. Davis let the crowd in on the fact that the new album should be released sometime this year. I got the chance to chat with Ben last week and he told me a little more about it.
Old favorites such as “Don’t Run,” “Child” and “Nursery Rhyme” were revisited and at times I could hear every member of the audience singing along. Dan Crowe, the band’s new drummer, fit in seamlessly and added a new flair to the classics. The dynamic between Davis and Crowe seemed like that of two good friends, and it was refreshing to see the two of them feed off of each other throughout the show.
The night was concluded with crowd favorite, “Doubt,” and it rang with new hope. I was left with nothing but high expectations for Bad Veins’ future that will no doubt be just as successful as the past. Davis said that he is unsure of when BV will play another show in Cincy, but speaking on behalf of myself (and probably everyone else there), we hope it is much sooner rather than later.