We Came As Romans ft The Devil Wears Prada, Dayseeker, and Hollow Front | To Plant A Seed 10 Year Anniversary Tour | 10/20/21 | Photos + Review

We Came As Romans Plant A Seed At A Sold Out Los Angeles Show

Venue: The Regent

Date: 10/20/21

We Came As Romans announced their 10 Year Anniversary Tour for their debut album “To Plant A Seed” in late 2019. Unfortunately, due to the global pandemic, the tour was postponed not once but twice. At last, the band could embark on the long-awaited anniversary tour, a year and a half after it was initially scheduled for. Along with the band came support from The Devil Wears Prada, Dayseeker, and Hollow Front. This stacked lineup brought the heavy, the emotional, and the nostalgia to a sold-out crowd that had awaited this night for a long while.

Up first was Hollow Front Grand Rapids, Michigan. The band is on the border between metalcore and post-hardcore, with some ambient backing tracks that bring in the progressive metal influences. The band opened their set with the opening track from their 2020 release “Loose Threads” titled “Afflicted,” which the band released independently. This song is melodic and comes out the gate, showcasing Tyler Tate’s harsh, growled vocals. The dude truly owns every inch of that stage. The band then went on to the title track from their newest album, “Loose Threads,” which really showcased guitarist and vocalist Dakota Alvarez’s vocal abilities and had a slower vibe to it. Devin Attard, one of the rising drummers in the metal scene, was headbanging and smashing the hell out of the drums in the back. The band then went on to play Vegabond, also from their newest album. This is one of the heavier tracks on the record and goes deep into the downtune with deep bass tones from bassist Brandon Rummler. In total, the band played seven songs and really started the show out perfectly. The crowd was still warming up and coming in, but they definitely got the pit warmed up for the bands to come. I cannot wait to see and photograph the Hollow Front boys again next year!

SETLIST

  1. Afflicted
  2. Loose Threads
  3. Vagabond
  4. Wearing Thin
  5. Don’t Fall Asleep
  6. Left Behind
  7. Treading Water

Up next was the incredible Dayseeker from Orange County, CA. Dayseeker is another band that borders between metalcore and post-hardcore, with a lot of progressive metal influences in their instrumentalization and the ambiance that is felt throughout their music. For their setlist on this tour, the band played songs all from their newest album, “Sleeptalk,” released in 2019 via Spinefarm Records. The interlude “The Embers Glow” played as the band came on stage, leading into their first song, “The Color Black,” one of the heavier songs on that new album. The song showcases vocalist Rory Rodriguez’s vocals in the forefront, with him mixing between cleans and screaming. This new album is very emotional, speaking about alcoholism, loss, eating disorders, and more. Rory really poured his heart into these vocals, and you can tell with how much emotion he has on stage. One thing that is apparent throughout Dayseeker’s music is the intricate chord progression and fluidity, which are courtesy of the band’s guitarist Gino Sgambelluri and bassist Ramone Valerio, who really add a lot of complex parts to the instrumentals. The band then moved on to their second song, that being “Gates of Ivory.” This is another of the heavier songs on the album. Still, it does such a great job as the rest, with a good yin and yang between the heavy and the melodic with those beautiful instrumentals and Rory’s vocals. The third song in the set was “Crooked Soul,” which has some of the heaviest instrumentals of the record, paired with Rory’s more melodic vocals, creating a beautiful pairing in the song. Drummer Zac Mayfield, the drummer for bands Oh, Sleeper, and Noble, filled in for this tour, truly holding down the fort on the drums. But during the fourth song in the set, “Burial Plot,” the band’s drummer Mike Karle swapped in and finished the set with the band. It was fantastic to see him there slaying as always. The band, in total, had seven songs in their set, six if you don’t include the interlude intro. Dayseeker is always a joy to see and photograph. Keep an eye out on them, as they have many more things in their arsenal to come!

SETLIST

  1. The Embers Glow (Interlude/Intro)
  2. The Color Black
  3. Gates Of Ivory
  4. Crooked Soul
  5. Burial Plot
  6. Drunk
  7. Sleeptalk

Up next was the all mighty The Devil Wears Prada from Dayton, Ohio. The Devil Wears Prada has become one of the most consistent bands within the metalcore genre throughout their career, releasing seven full-length albums and two EPs. The band played a career-spanning set for their direct support slot, playing songs from almost all of their releases. They opened up the set with “Nightfall,” the opening track from “ZII,” released in 2021 via Solid State Records. This song is one of the heaviest songs the band has released in years, bringing the band to an elevated version of the heaviness they were known for in their earlier days as a band. Vocalist Mike Hranica is on full display for a majority of the song, with his mid and high range screams piercing through the heaviness. The song has a slowdown section for the cleans, which are provided by guitarist and clean vocalist Jeremy DePoyster. The band then went on to play “Outnumbered” from the “Zombie EP.” This EP stands the test of time as one of the band’s most popular releases with its sheer heaviness. The crowd went nuts, with lots of moshing and crowd surfing. During this song, bassist Mason Nagy had incredible energy, flailing and headbanging to his’ heart’s content. Keyboardist Jonathan Gering really brings a lot to this song, adding the needed synths and backing that amp up the song to new levels. The third song in the band’s set was “Born To Lose” from the album “Dead Throne.” Coming hot off the release of Zombie EP in 2010, this 2011 record saw the band continuing off the momentum they built thus far, combining the sound of their previous works with their new, more mature sound. Born To Lose is one of the highlighted tracks from this album. I was honed in on guitarist Kyle Sipress, who absolutely slayed it on those lead guitar parts, as well as drummer Giuseppe Capolupo, who is an absolute machine on those beats. I was, unfortunately, unable to get any photos of Kyle or Giuseppe, as we photographers were kicked out of the photo pit a song early due to the crowdsurfing. However, I was still able to enjoy the band’s incredible set from the crowd, where they played ten songs in total, ranging from most of their discography. This band always plays a flawless set, and I was thoroughly impressed with what they showcased to us. I cannot wait to see and photograph these guys once again in the new year!

SETLIST

  1. Nightfall
  2. Outnumbered
  3. Born To Lose
  4. Chemical
  5. Lines of Your Hands
  6. Forlorn
  7. Sacrifice
  8. Mammoth
  9. Hey John, What’s Your Name Again?
  10. Danger: Wildman

Finally, We Came As Romans from Troy, Michigan, came to the stage. For the 10th anniversary of “To Plant A Seed,” the band played the album in its entirety. However, they didn’t necessarily play it in order. The band played the entirety of the album but mixed in fan-favorite songs from the band’s discography. Before the band came on stage, they had a beautiful video playing on their LED screens about how impactful this album was on their careers and onto them as individuals. The band opened up with the title track “To Plant A Seed.” The stage exploded with CO2 cannons and an extensive lighting setup brought by the band. Vocalist Dave Stephens came right out the gate screaming those vocals and really controlling the crowd. What was remarkable was seeing the dynamic between Dave and bassist and backup vocalist Andy Glass. This was my first time seeing the band after the passing of the band’s founding clean vocalist Kyle Pavone. I was curious to see how the vocal duties would be split up. Andy took over, doing some of the screaming vocals, while Dave did the clean vocal parts. The band changed keys to fit Dave’s voice, and the new arrangements sounded absolutely incredible. The second song the band played was “Broken Statues.” During this song, I focused on guitarist Joshua Moore, who really holds it down on those lead guitar parts and instrumental melody. I have been a fan of his guitar playing for years, and to finally photograph it live was a dream come true. It was also so cool to see drummer David Puckett absolutely slay those drums. Formerly in the band For Today, David is quite established in the metal scene and has a range in his’ drum playing. Just hearing his’ playing on these songs that inspired me so much as a young kid was amazing. For their third song, the band played “We Are The Reasons.” I focused during this song on rhythm guitarist Lou Cotton, who truly grooved along with the rhythm section and held it down. It was amazing to finally hear songs like “Intensions” and “Roads That Don’t End and Views That Never Cease” played live since I saw them back in 2012 for the first time. It was also incredible to hear the band’s newest song, “Black Hole,” performed live, along with fan-favorite songs like “Hope,” “Tracing Back Roots,” and “Wasted Age,” among others. This is a band that has been a favorite of mine for quite some time. They were one of the first bands I got into in the scene. I remember getting this We Came As Romans gray shirt at Hot Topic back in 2011 and just being in awe. Little did I know that it would start quite the collection of metal shirts to come. We Came As Romans demolished that stage and performed a fantastic nineteen-song set, really planting their seed into The Regent in Los Angeles, California, on this Wednesday night!

SETLIST

  1. To Plant A Seed
  2. Broken Statues
  3. We Are The Reasons
  4. Beliefs
  5. Dreams
  6. To Move On Is To Grow
  7. Wasted Age
  8. Lost In The Moment
  9. Hope
  10. Tracing Back Roots
  11. Black Hole
  12. Intensions
  13. Roads That Don’t End and Views That Never Cease
  14. Searching, Seeking, Reaching, Always
  15. I Will Not Reap Destruction
  16. An Ever-Growing Wonder

ENCORE

17. Promise Me

18. Cold Like War

19. Darkbloom

The “To Plant A Seed 10 Year Anniversary Tour” was a long time coming and something I’ve had on my calendar a total of 4 different times now. I am just so happy that the bands, the management, and the venue worked hard to make it happen. We Came As Romans is an essential band in my personal musical journey, so to see the album that brought them into my life played in its entirety was a dream come true. Shout out to The Devil Wears Prada, Dayseeker, and Hollow Front for truly bringing your A-Game and bringing some incredible music to Los Angeles. Truly one of the best shows I’ve had the honor of covering this year.

We Came As Romans | The Devil Wears Prada | Dayseeker | Hollow Front

Photos + Review courtesy of Jamie Kaufman | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter

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Thrice ft Self Help Family & Touche Amore

October 20, 2021 || Denver, CO

Self Help Family

Touche Amore

Thrice

Photos courtesy of Jess Kelly | Instagram | Twitter

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Saving Vice @ Broken Land Fest

Photographer Shay’s favorite things about Broken Land Fest

1. The venue itself is cool. Not sure if you’ve been there before but it’s my first time. When you step it there is a big open space that’s where the main stage is, to your right was another stage next to the kitchen, to your left is the bar, when you walk out to the back there is the garden stage which is literally outside in the garden.

2. Tattoos – flash tattoos, music and tattoos make for a great festivals. Don’t drink and get them though, lol

3. Art show, they had some performances with hula hoops and strippers. I saw this because this was at the time I was outside at the garden stage.

4. Very friendly environment, really good vibes everywhere.

5. Breakdowns, a lot of the kids from the long island hardcore music scene were in attendance, pretty sure for Bodysnatcher, and they live for breakdowns. It’s so nice to see everyone two stepping in unison to breakdowns!

6. Fusion of different music, you had old school rap like Scarhead ( bitches and cocaine, that’s what stood out after every song lol) , then you had new rap like Quija macc and then hardcore metal mixed in, it was great. And of course, Saving Vice got the attention of everyone, very high energy and the two vocals really works for them.

Photos + list above by Shay

Self proclaimed Metalhead from NYC, Phil shared a few words about his favorite sets of the day, ” Dropout Kings because of their fusion with Trap and Metalcore! I thought they were super sick! Bodysnatcher because they are one of the best downtempo bands out right now, absolute heavy madness. Skarhead because they are one of the best mid 90s NYHC bands and the best legacy act Broken Land Festival got. Honorable mentions also go to Left to Suffer, Yakmob, Saving Vice, Dishonest Escape and Awake at Last.”

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Pop Punk’s Still Not Dead Yet tour hits New York City!

Let’s go back to 2002 – you wake up for school, turn on MTV (back when they actually played music) and see the video for New Found Glory’s “My Friends Over You.” This was how I first came across the band. At the time, I had no idea what the song was and had never heard of them up until that point, but my twelve-year-old self was blown away and I instantly became hooked on their music. Fast forward over twenty years later, and New Found Glory is still at it and going stronger than ever. They have done many Warped Tour runs alongside different genres of bands, and in early 2019, they released a trailer with fellow pop-punk band Simple Plan announcing a tour called “Pop Punk’s Still Not Dead Yet.” I was super excited and bought tickets right away.

A few months later, a huge pandemic hit us and stopped bands from touring at all. The tour was cancelled and rebooked a few times over the next year or so, but even with line up changes it was set to continue no matter what. Finally the day came. It was a nice, breezy, and cool day in New York City, and the fact that the venue was up on top of a building overlooking Brooklyn made the show that much more special. The tour now consisted of LOLO (a pop/pop punk artist based out of Toronto), as well as Hot Mulligan and the infamous Less Than Jake.

The show started out a little lighter with LOLO, who has a poppy sound, but mixes some pop punk in there as well.

Then Hot Mulligan came on, with a very intense punk sound that punches you right in the face.

After Hot Mulligan was the infamous Less Than Jake, who is known for playing the style of punk music called Ska and were famous on the Vans Warped Tour route. Less Than Jake hit the stage hard with their strong ska sound.

Finally, it was time for the legendary New Found Glory. The mood was set by using a Backstreet Boys song “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back). They kicked into their set with the song “Understatement” and continued to kick ass all night long playing classics like “All Downhill From Here,” “Blitzkrieg Bop,” “Vicious Love,” “Dressed to Kill,” and the song I fell in love with them through, “My Friends Over You”. It’s not often that you come across a band that has been going strong for over twenty years, but it has been an amazing experience so far.

Photos & review by Anthony Petrizzo

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A Day To Remember w/ Asking Alexandria & Point North | The Re-Entry Tour | 10/13/21 | Photos + Review

Point North

Asking Alexandria

A Day To Remember

A Day To Remember | Asking Alexandria | Point North

Photos courtesy of Jess Kelly | Instagram | Twitter

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State Champs w/ Real Friends, Four Year Strong, Just Friends, and Bearings | Pure Noise Records Tour 2021 | 10/10/21 | Photos + Review

As soon as I saw that this tour was announced, I knew that I had to go. The lineup was stacked, and with some of my all-time favorite pop-punk bands were all on this – State Champs, Four Year Strong, Real Friends, Just Friends, and Bearings.

First up was Bearings. The crowd was slowly starting to pour in before they took the stage. I remember the first time I saw them, and I didn’t know who they were. I instantly fell in love with their music because of the lyrics in the songs they played and was upbeat and happy. The type of music that makes you want to jump around and start singing along. I wasn’t expecting to see many crowd surfers during their set, but to my surprise, there was and their frontman, Doug Cousins even jumped off stage to help people coming over the barricade. They played songs off their newest album, “Hello, It’s You,” and some of their older songs from the past. Bearings set the show off with energy to carry on throughout the night.

Following Bearings, Just Friends was up next. It’s been a few years since I had last seen them live on Sad Summer Fest, and I wasn’t sure what to expect from them. It was the strangest yet most hypnotizing band I’ve seen in my years of going to concerts. They danced and swayed to the music and got the crowd hyped during the opening song, “Supersonic.” I’ve never seen a band like them with their energy and stage presence. At one point, most of the band turned around and started shaking their butts to the crowd. Everyone was cheering while Eric Butler slapped the bassists’ butt and taking a phone out, and taking selfies and random pictures of the other band members on stage during “Never Gonna Bring You Down” and “Flex.”

Next, we had one of my favorite bands playing – Four Year Strong. I’ve been listening to them since 2009 and have seen them countless times over the years, and they never disappoint. Starting off with “Heroes Get Remembered, Legends Never Die” the crowd exploded while the lights flashed, and everyone was singing along. The set was a mix of songs from multiple albums, including their newest, “Brain Pain.” released last year. People were slowly coming back over the barricade crowd surfing, but even more, came during the third song they played, “It Must Really Suck to Be Four Year Strong Right Now.” The tempo was upbeat and fast-paced and the whole time. I always lose my voice when I see them live as the music is so much fun to listen to and scream to the top of your lungs.

Real Friends came out next. I was excited to see them live as this was my first time. I have almost every single album from them, and once I heard in 2020 that they parted ways with Dan Lambton, I was sad but excited to see what the future held for them. Cody Murano, formerly of Parting Ways and Youth Fountain, they came back with their newest album, “Torn in Two.” It’s been on repeat since it came out for me, and they played a mix of songs from that album, as well as older classics such as “I Don’t Love You Anymore,” “Late Nights in My Car,” and “Me First.” I was impressed with the sound, the lighting, and the energy they had on stage.

Then, it was time for the headliner – State Champs. Yet another band I’ve seen countless times over the years since I first discovered them. They started off with “Secrets” while cryo and streamers emerged from the stage. The venue was packed with people; everyone was singing along, more people came over the barricade, crowd surfing while the photographers did their best not to get hit or kicked in the process for the three songs. I was singing the whole time as they’re one of my favorite bands, and the energy they show on stage is unmatched. They played older songs such as “Elevated,” “Criminal,” and “Mine Is Gold,” as well as some of the newer songs they’ve released recently like “Just Sound” and their cover of Fall Out Boy’s “Chicago Is So Two Years.” After the last song, the house lights stayed off, meaning that they have encore songs. They came out from behind the stage and ended the night with more pryo and playing “All You Are Is History” and “Dead and Gone.” The whole show was full of energy throughout the entire night, making it one of the favorites I’ve been to in the last 19 months since the pandemic started.

State Champs | Real Friends | Four Year Strong | Just Friends | Bearings

Photos + Review courtesy of Jess Kelly | Instagram | Twitter

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Butcher Babies w/ Infected Rain, Stitched Up Heart, & The Unsung | Butcher Babies VS. Goliath Tour | 10/7/21 | Photos + Review

Butcher Babies Slay Their Final Battle Against Goliath at 1720 in Los Angeles, CA

Venue: 1720 in Los Angeles, CA

Date: 10/7/21

When a band hits their 10-year milestone of being together, that is a huge accomplishment that deserves celebration. Unfortunately, that milestone for Butcher Babies came during the global COVID-19 pandemic, where they couldn’t party like the rockstars they are. One year later, the band came back with a vengeance to dominate the country with their first headlining tour in well over two years, where the band would play their debut album “Goliath” in its entirety, along with other songs. In the battle against Goliath were: Infected Rain, Stitched Up Heart, and local support from The Unsung. With this quartet of bands, Butcher Babies led the clan to victory at the final date of the Butcher Babies VS. Goliath Tour!

Up first was The Unsung from San Diego, CA. This quartet is the perfect example of progressive metalcore. One thing I always note whenever I see The Unsung live is just how tight these guys are. Like bands like Periphery, Veil of Maya, and many more in the genre, the vocals are a great mixture of cleans and screaming, courtesy of Tyler Sinclair. However, what sets them apart is that their music tends to have more cleans than screaming, which helps them reach a wider audience. Guitarist Devin Castro is an absolute beast, creating melodic hooks, leads, and solos that shred the hell out of the crowd. Drummer Garret Brown is a beast, playing many different styles and rhythmic patterns throughout the band’s music, sometimes changing time signature and tempos mid-song, which is common within the progressive metal genre. Closing out the band’s lineup is Thomas Sumstine on bass, who absolutely SLAYS adding in those deep grooves and tones that are pretty much essential to the music The Unsung releases. The band played a total of 7 songs, bringing out songs from their first EP, “Rise,” for the first time in a while, along with songs from their sophomore EP “Sin Cera” and new singles “Manic” and “Awake.” The band also brought their iconic light show with them, which adds that extra edge and atmosphere that helps set the tone. It was an epic start to the show, and I am so happy to have seen them again! The last time was around Christmas time in 2019, so it had been almost 2 years without hangs and without seeing this epic band live.

SETLIST

  1. Manic
  2. Herald
  3. Awake
  4. Rise
  5. Lacuna
  6. Chosen
  7. Desolation

Up next was Stitched Up Heart from Los Angeles, CA. I last saw and photographed Stitched Up Heart back in 2019, so I was excited to see and photograph them again and do so at an actual venue, this time and not at a bar. I’d best describe Stitched Up Heart’s sound as a combination between gothic metal, hard rock, and alternative metal. Touring alongside bands across the hard rock and metal genres, they have a sound that is quite versatile and diverse. The band started their set with the song “This Skin” from their 2020 album “Darkness,” released via Century Media Records. This song has a light electronic backing in parts and the downtuned guitar and bass tones, making the song a bit more light sounding than a lot of their other music. You could hear vocalist Mixi’s singing on full display out of the gate, showing a newfound strength and force behind her vocals that I didn’t hear at the last show. The second song, “Warrior,” also came from their newest album and is more of a stadium rock-style track. Those bass tones courtesy of Randy Mathias are on full display in this song, along with the crushing beats from drummer James Decker. The band then went on to their third song, “Catch Me When I Fall,” from their 2016 album “Finally Free.” Overall, this album has a darker vibe, and the guitar tones are much more gritty and dark, and guitarist Merritt Goodwin delivers on this tenfold. The band played a total of seven songs throughout their thirty-minute set, completely blowing my expectations out of the water. As it was the last day of the tour, there happened to be the last day of tour pranks. The other bands ran on stage during the band’s final song, “Monster,” and started randomly taking apart Decker’s drum kit mid-song. It was pretty funny, to say the least, and it made me wonder what pranks would come going forward. Stitched Up Heart as a whole seems to have stepped things up since the lockdown, really fine-tuning things and coming back tighter than ever.

SETLIST

  1. This Skin
  2. Warrior
  3. Catch Me When I Fall
  4. Finally Free
  5. Lost
  6. My Demon
  7. Monster