This Halloween, patrons had a chance to relive the 2000s in all their glory at New Brookland Tavern’s Emo Night Columbia. The event featured several local bands covering the likes of Paramore, Fall Out Boy, Taking Back Sunday and more.
The night was a fast-paced Halloween celebration. Patrons of drinking age were invited to treat themselves to the night’s specialty drink, the Black Parade Lemonade, a pun on the title of a popular My Chemical Romance song.
Many attendees came in costume. Morticia Addams, Freddie Mercury, Catwoman and a number of cowboys rubbed elbows in the venue’s grungy interior. And, of course, some simply arrived decked out in classic emo regalia.
The house was full of dramatic eye shadow, black nail polish and conspicuously dyed hair on people of all ages and genders, in tribute to a bygone era when Fall Out Boy played Warped Tour and armfuls of Hot Topic wristbands were still cool. It was a full house with lines out the door before the night even began.
New Brookland has put on around 8 Emo Nights like this one. So, why is Emo Night so popular?
“I think a lot of the people that are here, you know, they grew up with this music, they grew up listening to this music, and for them it’s got this nostalgic quality to it. They remember some of the best times of their lives when they are listening to it, and when they listen to it now, you know, they get to be back in that spot,” said Blake Arambula, founder and sometime DJ of Emo Night.
Patrons seemed to agree; there is just something about the camaraderie and nostalgia that keeps them coming back.
“It was like all the music I listened to in middle school,” said first-year graduate student Samantha Flynn.
“It seems like something that’s a part of me … this seems like my group of people,” attendee Seth Anderson said, who can attest to just how bustling Emo Night was; he just barely made it in before the last tickets sold out.
He saw getting to experience the magnetic excitement of the night’s nostalgic celebration as a stroke of luck.
“I was the emo kid in high school," he said. "So when I saw emo night I showed up ... it was like destiny.”