LOS ANGELES, CA – After hearing about this Emo Nite event from social media and my fellow goth friends, I decided to actually pay a visit to the most talked about emo event there is. I took it upon myself to not see any videos, pictures, or read any reviews of the venue beforehand, as I just wanted to go with a clean slate and with an open mind.

I did not know what I was getting my self into, but as entered the festival ground at the Shrine Expo Hall, I was overwhelmed with the atmosphere. Never before in my life was I surrounded in so much of the emo culture. Babes and dudes wearing chokers, makeup and hair dye surrounded me in one huge room waiting to party. As a fellow emo music lover myself, I just felt as if I was home. Everybody was open and easy going adding to the relaxed vibe, making it easy to talk with people and even snag the occasional random high-five.

There were booths filled with band merchandise, Cd’, pins, and cool tote bags as well as three different bars for those who wanted to have extra fun that night. Outside was lined with food trucks and more merchandise booths to peruse. It was Emo Nite Day’s three-year anniversary, and from the looks of it, it seemed like it was going to be the biggest party in Los Angeles that night.

With the line-up in my phone, I embarked on my musical emo experience.

WHITNEY PEYTONWhiteny Peyton at Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.

For me, this was the first dj to really start the party. I never really thought that having a dj play full-length songs would go ever well, especially in the A.D.D. era we live in … but, man, was I wrong. It sounded, and vibed, so good. The music Whitney played made me feel young and invigorated … as if I was in middle school all over again. The continuous emo music had everyone moving and dancing to the beat without a care in the world. With confetti shooting shooting in the air and silly string ending up in everyone’s hair, this was one hell of a way to get my day started … and started right. This was a performance that I hope to run into again at Emo Nite.

MOVEMENTSMovements @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.

This was honestly my favorite act of the day. I have been trying to see Movements for a very long time now ever since they released their demo track, “Protection”, back in 2015. This Orange County based band is relatively new band, but their brand of alternative rock has struck a nerve in music fans and the music scene.

Their set was absolutely amazing. They started off with some of the newer songs from their newly released album “Feel Something”, then later played some of their “older” songs. As soon as they started playing their older songs, a huge push pit started to form, and the crowd surfing began. I stayed in the pit until the set ended. It was great to finally see them live and sing every word to every one of their songs.

CRAIG OWENS

Continuing my day of music was Craig Owens and to my surprise, as I arrived, he was doing a stripped down “acoustic” set. I wasn’t there for the start of his performance, but in catching halfway him halfway during his performance he was sitting at a piano playing and singing his melodies.

I wasn’t too familiar with Craig Owens’ repertoire, but I enjoyed his performance. I never really thought a emo piano set would sound so good, but Craig’s performance was quite riveting on both an emotional and musical level. The fact that the whole crowd was reciting his lyrics word by word made the experience that much more magical.

TIGERS JAW

Tigers Jaw is another band I’ve wanted to see for a very long time. The crowd was dense by the time I got there, but I slowly inched my way up closer to the stage with every song that they played. Songs like “I Saw Water” (with a special appearance by Adam Mcllwee), “Window”, and my personal favorite “Plane Vs Tank Vs Submarine”, won the hearts of the crowd.

There was also a push pit that I was a part of as well. Funny enough, Pat Benson actual fell during the last song, but he amazed everyone as he quickly covered it up with a nice save by playing on the floor and just going crazy on that guitar. It was quite the demonstration of musical professionalism, which was further illustrated as he took his guitar, played it on top of an amp, and just started playing his guitar on top of there as well,

GOTHBOI CLIQUE

A HUGE thank you to whoever put GothBoi Clique onto the lineup because I have been a fan ever since my first listen back in 2015.

My first time seeing the group was exactly how I thought it would be: mellow with the constant occult sound. Not a lot of people are fans of this type of music … and I do not understand why. I’m all for it and everyone should go see them at least once, because if you love emo lyrics with a steady trap beat, GothBoi Clique never fails to deliver. They are the pinnacle of soft horror core.

The set felt extra sorrowful because of the fact that the group had recently lost one of it’s members at age 20. Rest in peace, Lil Peep. In my opinion, they were one of the most underrated groups in the lineup.  Underrated and one of my favorites. How’s that for emo?

THE USED

I was never really into The Used … until I finally saw them live.

In fact- and please don’t shoot the messenger- but I actually didn’t have them on my list of bands to check out. It wasn’t until my my friend literally dragged me to go see them. I’m glad my friends have good taste in music.

Even though I’m not a huge fan of acoustic sets, I was blown away by The Used. In a packed room, The Used performed a twenty minute set that was filled with so much emotions and tears that I pretty much had goose bumps during the whole performance. At first, I felt like an outcast in the crowd not knowing the lyrics to the songs, but hey, all that matters is that now I am a fan and I can say my first experience was a great one thanks to my friend who forced me to go see them.

AARON GILLESPIE

Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.

I’ve had been a fan of Underoath ever since the sixth-grade. Actually, Underoath was the first ever screamo band I was introduced to. Like The Used, Aaron played an acoustic set. Unliked the used, I actually knew the words to most of the songs that he played.

For me, personally, this performance was about as nostalgic as it could have gotten.

MACHINE GUN KELLY

Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.

What a surprising 180 degree twist it was when Machine Gun Kelly hit the stage. Going from straight up acoustic set to emo hip hop was such a shift in vibe, but it worked!

When the hip-hop lyrics started to hit the ears of the many emo kids who were just rocking out the DJ jamming out to Fallout Boy and The Killers, I was astonished how nuts the same kids who were rocking out to the emo scene music beforehand, were rocking to Machine Gun Kelly.

The stage, and performance, was lit and the crowd were jumping off their feet. It was a nice shot of adrenaline toto keep the crowd’s energy going for the rest of the night.

DEMI LOVATO

I never thought that one day I would see Demi Lovato performing live on stage. That all changed at Emo Nite Day.

I had heard about her popping in for DJ gigs at Emo Nite a couple of times, and truthfully, I wouldn’t have thought about going to those events, but her performance has me thinking twice. Truthfully, I did not know any of her songs but I’ve ben a fan of her from watching her on the Disney Channel. As phones started recording and lights started going out, the crowd got bigger and tighter. She performed “Sorry Not Sorry” but in a punk version for her “RAWR XD” fans and it was …. amazing (no shame).

Emo Nite Day couldn’t have asked for a better surprise guest.

Emo is not dead and will never die.

The crowds of people dressed in all black and colored hair made me like I was in the golden years of middle school. It felt like home knowing almost everyone in there is a fan of such different music. I let my adult side go and the inner kid in me just bursted out. No doubt that I will keep coming to these festivals.

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Craig Owens @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Craig Owens @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
The Used @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
The Used @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Demi Lovato & Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Demi Lovato & Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Craig Owens @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Craig Owens @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Movements @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Movements @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Movements @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Movements @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie  @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Tigers Jaw @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Tigers Jaw @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Craig Owens @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Craig Owens @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Whitney Peyton at Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Whitney Peyton at Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Demi Lovato @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Demi Lovato @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Aaron Gillespie @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
The Used @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
The Used @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Whiteny Peyton at Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Whiteny Peyton at Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Gil Riego Photography. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Tigers Jaw @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Tigers Jaw @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by James L Harper. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.
Machine Gun Kelly @ Emo Nite Day @ Shrine Expo Hall 12/3/17. Photo by Grizzlee Martin. Used with permission.

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