bert mccracken from the used by lauren zaknoun

CONCERT: In love with life: The Used’s intimate Boston show

The Used is a band that doesn’t get enough credit. Between a career spanning two decades, endless touring, and now a new album on the way, The Used is one of the giants of emo and it resonates in every song from their In Love & Death classics to their more recent songs like “Blow Me.”

Photo by Lauren Zaknoun

Embarking on an intimate tour with post-hardcore openers Dragged Under, a thread of anticipation filled the venue as excitement for their new album mounts. They debuted a new song, “Paradise Lost, A Poem By John Milton” earlier this week and they even teased one of their new songs at soundcheck.

The Paradise Rock Club was the perfect place for an intimate but rowdy concert. And this was definitely a show longtime, diehard fans wanted to be at. Fans from Alston to Australia packed the room wall to wall. For all their energy and drive, The Used is a band of gracious guys. Smiles and private asides to fans abound though frontman Bert McCracken wasn’t afraid to come down on the few trying to ruin the good time for the many.

Photo by Lauren Zaknoun

McCracken described their previous album, 2017’s The Canyon as something that was “for me” but declared their upcoming album, Heartwork, would be a mix of their first album and In Love & Death, to the raucous excitement of concertgoers packed into the soldout show. Their setlist didn’t stray from this framework either, featuring some favorites from Lies For the Liars mixed in too.

It may only be 2020 but it has already proven to be a good fan for music lovers. “This is gonna be a great year for music,” McCracken told the crowd before going on to tease about touring with My Chemical Romance as he has been since the beginning of the tour.

Photo by Lauren Zaknoun

While bands have come and gone and come back again since the emo heyday of the early/mid-aughts, one thing needs to be clear, though.

“This isn’t a reunion tour because we never fucking left!” McCracken crowed. And for that, we’re thankful.

Heartwork comes out on April 24 via Big Noise/Hassle Records.

Check out our gallery of The Used’s set below! Photos by Lauren Zaknoun.

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Lauren Zaknoun

Lauren Zaknoun is an artist, photographer, music enthusiast, and founder of BANSHEE ZINE. With no musical talent to speak of, she supports her local scene by going to shows, shooting bands, and loudly reminding everyone that Paramore is the best band in the world.

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