‘You’ll Be [More Than] Fine’ at a Palaye Royale concert

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Fehr and Palaye Royale in 2018. Courtesy of Kaitlyn Fehr.

By Kaitlyn Fehr, Chief Copyeditor

Picture this: it’s the end of February 2020 and you’re just days away from your 20th birthday. This year, you’re celebrating in Europe, and you spend days agonizing over whether or not you should go see one of your favorite groups, the glam-rock band Palaye Royale, alone in Amsterdam. You decide not to go, making excuses to yourself that you’ll have plenty of other chances to see them live and that you have to study for midterms. 

Now, picture that it’s almost two full years later, and you’re weeks out from your 22nd birthday. You’re standing in line in the cold on a Wednesday night, waiting for the House of Blues Boston to open its doors so that you can finally, finally make up for that terrible choice you made two years prior.

Admittedly, I’ve seen Palaye Royale live before. Both times were in 2018, on their tour with Pop Evil and on the last full cross-country Warped Tour. I even met them that year, and have the picture to show for it (they were some of the nicest band members I’ve ever met, and all gave great hugs). Both of those times, events out of my control meant I didn’t get to see their full set, and man did I miss out.

Palaye opened their set with “Nightmares,” a song off their newest record, The Bastards. Quite frankly, the scream that erupted from my body when lead singer Remington Leith came on stage wasn’t human. 

“Nightmares” is a high-energy, heavy-sounding song, and the opening chords perfectly built the crowd’s energy into pure concert chaos. A lot of the crowd was there for the headliner, Yungblud, but that didn’t seem to matter when Palaye came on stage. The crowd was screaming, jumping, and headbanging, even if they didn’t know the words.

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Palaye has some of the best stage presence I’ve ever seen, and I’ve been to a lot of concerts. Likewise, the brothers––Sebastian Danzig, Remington Leith, and Emerson Barrett––truly know how to put on a show. 

Between Leith crawling around on stage and guitarist Danzig dancing from one end of stage to the other, their performance was electric. I could only just make out the drummer, Barrett, from my vantage point, but I could tell he was putting on quite the show as well. 

As I’ve come to expect in my years as a Palaye fan, and excitedly told my roommate about it in advance, Leith did climb around on the balconies surrounding the stage in the middle of the set. Leith has been warned on previous occasions to stop doing this, but continues to do so anyway because he’s a rockstar. 

At one point, someone in the crowd was visibly not doing well, and the brothers stopped the show to make sure they made it out safely before resuming. Danzig, Leith, and Barrett see their fans as family, and put their safety and happiness above everything else when putting on a show. While I didn’t take advantage of it this time around, they’re known for coming out before and after every single show to meet all the fans they possibly can. 

The newer members of the band, Jennie Vee and Andrew Martin, blended in seamlessly. At one point, my roommate who had never even heard of Palaye before turned to me and said that Martin “was like fucking Mozart.” 

I was so worried she was going to be miserable, but Palaye put on such an insanely good show that even my roommate enjoyed herself without knowing the words to a single song.

Well, she knew the words to one song. I have never seen My Chemical Romance live, but hearing Palaye cover “Teenagers” gave me a sliver of that experience. Everyone in that crowd was a current or reformed emo kid, and we all collectively lost our minds scream-singing the lyrics to the iconic song. 

Of course, Palaye played their own songs, and titles like “You’ll Be Fine,” “Lonely,” and “Mr. Doctor Man” were hits with the crowd. So rarely does a band sound as good on stage as they do on a studio recording, but Palaye always manages to succeed all of my expectations. 

I’ve heard some of the tracks before, but they were even better than the last times I heard them. Finally hearing the songs off the newer albums that got me through the pandemic was truly a magical moment.

Seeing Palaye Royale live on a tour with Yungblud as one of my first concerts back was a full-circle moment. The last real concert I saw pre-pandemic was Yungblud at Paradise Rock in 2019. The last real concert I should have been at was Palaye Royale in Amsterdam. 

As mad at myself as I am for missing that Amsterdam concert, Palaye Royale was worth the wait, and I’m so glad they were one of my first concerts after two years without live music. If you ever have a chance to see this underground rock band, even if you have never heard a single song, I promise you’ll have a good time.