I had signed up to work the show last night because I saw that Sylar would be on the tour. I fell in love with Sylar a couple months ago and was willing to miss all of the other amazing shows going on last night just to catch them again. It wasn’t that the other bands on the bill weren’t great but, I had seen them all before and was never really that impressed by what they were putting out there. When I noticed the set times posted on the Facebook event page, my heart broke. Sylar wasn’t on the line-up and I came to find out that this was one of the only shows of the tour they wouldn’t be performing on. Needless to say, I was feeling a bit bitter when walking into the show last night.
The show started off with Bad Seed Rising from Maryland. These kids were the youngest and most unknown group of the night and they knew it. Singer Francheska Pastor asked the crowd to raise their hand if they had heard of Bad Seed Rising prior to the show. Nobody moved. Then she asked the crowd who had never heard of them before and everyone’s hand shot into the air. So maybe these guys were unknown to the crowd before the show but that quickly changed. This young group (I mean, these guys can’t be older than 20) took the stage with the same power and ferocity as the groups to come up after them. They had a sense of professionalism that is typically lost on younger groups and that had me sold. The music… well the music didn’t have me sold. It just wasn’t for me but I definitely respect the amount of talent these young kids have and do hope to see them on more national tours!
The Color Morale is the band that played next and, even though I’m not a die hard fan of theirs, I felt like part of The Color Morale family during their set. Singer Garrett Rapp put it best when he yelled to the crowd, “You are The Color Morale!” I would be lying if I said I didn’t get chills and didn’t feel my heart flutter a bit with those words. The thing I love about The Color Morale is their positive aura. Everything about this band is everything that got me into the metal scene to begin with. No matter how big they ever got, ever are or ever will be, they can still be spotted at the merch tables after every single set until people stop talking to them. I’ve met the guys before and, when talking to them, you get this sense that they truly care. Last night, as I watched fans approach the members, my heart was warmed by the fact that multiple times I heard the band acknowledge fans by first name. They remembered the kids from previous meetings and never forgot their stories. Being able to watch a band act this way with fans is truly one of my favorite things on the planet.
The Color Morale’s music is one of those things that, when you hear it, you know who it is within just a couple of notes. Garrett’s way of screaming, singing, and just talking in rhythm is distinctive and, in a scene full of bands doing pretty much the same thing, it’s refreshing and has me hooked. Being able to see them live and the energy they bring to the table just makes them stand out more in an over-saturated scene. Even with the positive aura they have and all of the positivity that Garrett speaks, there is no lack of power and brutality in their presence. When they play a song it feels like you are getting punched in the gut but, when it’s done and Garrett starts thanking the crowd for the support, it’s like they are giving you a sucker to make up for the gut punch they just delivered. It blends the two best things about the metal scene perfectly… love and brutality.
As I was still reveling in the raw power of The Color Morale’s set, Blessthefall took the stage and I was instantly transported back to my angsty teenage years. These guys really haven’t changed much since they started back in the early 2000’s. They have an accessible brand of metalcore music that the young crowd found just as heavy and brutal as I found The Color Morale. I have to be honest, I’m not a fan of Blessthefall. They have a niche audience and I’m about fifteen years too old to understand it all. As I mentioned, this scene feels a bit over saturated to me and, unfortunately, Blessthefall really doesn’t have anything that helps them stand out from the crowd. Sure, their music was clean and they had some energy on stage but who doesn’t?
Finishing off the night was Memphis May Fire. I feel like these guys have a bit of a bad rep in the metal world. They’re too popular, too emotional… whatever your preconceived notion of these guys is… forget it. To be honest, I was one of those haters when walking into the show last night. I wasn’t expecting much and normally refer to Memphis May Fire as a “Hot Topic Metal” band. Their crowd typically consists of younger kids who think their music is heavy as fuck when really, it’s the radio rock of the metalcore scene. At least that’s what I thought….
Memphis May Fire took the stage with enough power and ferocity to make me take a step back and question all of my opinions on this band. Matty Mullins, the singer, had this feeling of being a super down to earth guy but wasn’t vocal about it like The Color Morale was. He didn’t really say much in between songs but he just gave off this very “real” vibe. I believed him when he said that MMF loves Minneapolis so much that they wanted to shoot a music video during last night’s set. Every thank you he said felt like it was truly coming from the heart and, even though I had been drinking the haterade when it came to this band prior to last night, that all changed in the matter of a couple of songs.
As I mentioned, MMF decided to shoot a music video during the set last night. Matty jumped down into the crowd with a camerman and asked the audience members to try and just respect their space but also go apeshit crazy. As I tried to imagine what this would look like, the crowd started to spin around Matty and I quickly lost the frontman in the swirl of people. I’ve been in live music videos before and, if you love the band, it can be a life changing experience. Last night didn’t change my life but being able to watch so many people get so close to a band that they truly love was more than enough to make that image get stuck in my head.
I walked into last night’s show with a bitter taste in my mouth. The only band I wanted to see had dropped off of the night and I was getting texts from my friend about how great Cute Is What We Aim For (one of my all time favorites) was at their show with We The Kings. I truly felt like I had made the wrong decision when it came to my show choice of the night and that made the bitter taste in my mouth even worse. I had this preconceived idea that the bands playing last night were all as generic as they come but I was quickly proven wrong. I fell in love with majority of the bands last night… bands that I had sworn off.
I laid off the haterade last night and ended up falling in love with some bands I never thought I would enjoy.
Venue: Skyway Theatre
Sausage Fest Meter- 6 out of 10
Average Age of the Crowd- 12
Crowd Surfers- 0
Broken Bones- 0
Celebrity Sightings- None
Overall Score-6 out of 10
Show on Deck- Architects/ Stray From the Path/ Make Them Suffer