3OH!3 and Emo Nite brought The Want House Party Tour to Phoenix on Saturday and, for a few hours, 2008 was in the building.
A pair of DJs started the revamped show experience with a slew of Top 40 tracks from the mid-2000’s. Already amped and more than a little tipsy, the crowd turned the venue into a club for their set.
Emo Nite LA, already an event staple in Phoenix, kept the party going with a DJ set full of old favorites from Fall Out Boy to Paramore and beyond. Emo Nite is known for making the audience the biggest part of the experience, inviting attendees to jump onstage to dance and sing along with their middle school memories. While the set was fun, it started to drag into the evening as the fans grew a little more restless for the night’s headlining performances.
Lil Aaron was the first guest, pseudo-rapping over emo staples. Playing original songs like “Anymore”, “Quit” and “Drugs”, he made sure to name drop all his artist features before the autotune kicked in. Maybe I’m just old, but watching the younger members of the audience shout his lyrics was both confusing and disheartening. Lil Aaron let the tracks do most of the work and it was a relief when his overly edited voice left the stage to make room for 3OH!3.
Sean Foreman and Nathaniel Motte may be married adults, but their performance of Want in full took the room right back to Warped Tour 2008. The duo hasn’t lost a step or any of the antics that made them famous. It was wild watching them sing “PUNKB*TCH” and “CHOKECHAIN” and even more so listening to a roomful of millennials scream all the words.
One thing’s for sure- it may be 10 years later but the scene will still turn up to 3OH!3. Even lesser-known tracks from Want garnered the same response as songs like “STARSTRUKK” as Foreman and Motte teased their fans with the same provocative dancing and innuendo that makes up the majority of their lyrics.
“Is it okay if I get a little weird?” Foreman asked his crowd before launching into a dance break while Motte egged him on. All too soon, the last notes of “COLORADOSUNRISE” faded and Emo Nite LA retook the stage. This time, they were joined by Escape the Fate vocalist Craig Mabbitt for a few songs. Drunk on alcohol and nostalgia, the wildly excited crowd jumped back onstage and stayed there for 3OH!3’s encore of “My First Kiss” and “DONTTRUSTME”.
Want may be a completely ridiculous album, but the House Party Tour was only partially based in nostalgia. The truth is that this record has actually stood the test of time. Every scene kid who grew up with a MySpace and an emo phase let 3OH!3 happen, and it’s a wave they’ve ridden through multiple Warped Tour runs, a cruise and now a successful 10-year tour.
At the end of the day, The Want House Party Tour went a little long but ended up being one hell of a good time. Fans left tired, happy and decked out in merch that wouldn’t have looked out of place at a throwback party (but will undoubtedly be worn proudly out here in 2018).
The Want House Party Tour rolls on until December 7. Shows are selling out but the last few tickets can be found here.
Story and photos by Olivia Khiel