Motionless in White comes home to Scranton, PA

Blurb from Emily’s twitter, ” I am the same age that @ChrisMotionless was when MIW was taking off. 20 years old and I was able to shoot photography here. My home. Where I started my photography journey. I will never ever take this night for granted, it was the best of my life. Thank you forever @MIWband. “

Photos by Emily Sulkowski | Instagram | Twitter

Trinity of Terror Tour 2022

April 16, 2022 | The Fillmore Philadelphia, PA

I’m starting this review with the obvious, I am very very lucky. Post covid life for photographers has been pure insanity. I’ve been denied more shows this year than any other in my 4 years of shooting shows. So being able to shoot such a monumental tour for the metal scene, I am beyond grateful. Obviously, this tour was absolutely a treat for me to shoot. I had more fun than ever, made tons of new friends, and was brought back to my days as a teenager with angst in my heart and eyeliner smudged on my face. Let’s recap one of the best nights of my emo kid life. 

Lilith Czar was definitely the artist most unfamiliar to me. I definitely had to jam her album in my two hour car ride, but despite how amazing it was, nothing beat seeing her perform in person. Apart from being stunningly beautiful, she was absolutely radiant on the stage. She was meant to be up there. Despite not bringing any rowdiness to the crowd, everyone was entranced watching her. Her entire band was outstanding, the rock music blended with witchy charm, making everyone in the crowd feel like they could conquer the world. I am definitely looking forward to some of the tour bills she is on in the coming months, as I am eager to see her perform again.  

Every elder-emo knows Black Veil Brides. The scene veterans still absolutely rule even after almost a decade. I found myself singing along to songs I forgot I knew every word to. The band was a very important part of my life and where I am now, as they were my introduction to the scene. And it’s always amazing to see the opener making the crowd wound up. While their music isn’t quite the same as the metalcore that makes people ready to mosh, the fans still made sure to keep the crowd moving. I cannot stress the overwhelming talent of both Jake and Jinxx, arguably the best guitarists in the scene to this day, CC and his outstanding drumming, and of course, the frontman of legend, Andy. Years later, and they still put on one of the best shows to watch live. 

At this point in my professional career, my love of Ice Nine Kills is no secret. And I can’t bring into words how much I absolutely adore this band. So I’ll let my friend’s words sum it up. I took him to his first Ice Nine Show this year, and as soon as we left the venue, he looks at me and says, “ When you said horror metal, I was expecting The Misfits, and you just showed me fucking Rammstein.” And he’s right. Ice Nine is always larger than life. I had a good laugh with a fellow photographer, who had never shot the band before. She expressed how she’s never seen such an insane act in front of her. And I agree. They are forever unmatched in the energy, presence, and entertainment value. The somewhat tame crowd came alive and almost feral as the first chords rang out through the Fillmore. Ricky and Joe are both incredible support vocally for the always outstanding Spencer. Chris is a magician on guitar, and Patrick’s bone shaking drumming is the perfect bow on top of the absolute gift of a show the band always provides. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t counting the days until I get to see them again. 

I was raised in the 570. Motionless in White are something of hometown heroes for me and many others. Philadelphia always ends up being a welcome home show for them, and that usually makes it the craziest show you will ever attend. Even down a man on stage, Motionless in White will never disappoint. I have to give huge credit to their photographer Bryce, as he created one of the most beautiful stage shows I’ve ever seen with LED screens and visuals. It was a treat to be able to take photos of it. I’ve been following Motionless around for years, and they quite literally just get better every time I see them. They have an amazing, natural way of making the entire crowd feel like they’re hanging out with their best friends. They also have a way of making a crowd go feral, and that’s sometimes a photographer’s nightmare. But dodging crowd surfers is worth seeing an entire room of people like me have an amazing time at a concert. Their setlist was packed full of heavy hitters that even the most casual of fans could scream along to. The entire band are outstanding performers, and you can see the joy in their faces while they do so. 

This tour was a really special thing for me, and a lot of people. I truthfully don’t think I will ever have this much fun at a show again. I’m always grateful I get to work with such amazing artists, and am beyond thankful for all the amazing photographers I met that night. I will always be chasing nights like this night I had in Philadelphia. 

  Photos + review courtesy of Emily Sulkowski

 The Camera Affect Promotions |Instagram Twitter | Youtube

Diseased & Disguised Tour 2020 | Photos + Review

Metalcore is a genre that never seems to go away, and that’s a good thing. When two giants of the scene, Beartooth and Motionless in White, announced their co-headlining tour, everyone knew we were in for a treat. With Limbs and Stick To Your Guns as support, this tour set the tone for the rest of 2020. 

Limbs was a band I had never heard of, but I was pleasantly surprised. They brought an energy no one in the crowd expected so early in the night. I’m used to watching openers have a few courtesy head bangs and nothing outside of it. The pit soon opened and the night began. With only one album, a few EPs and singles in their discography, you’d never expect a band to pack such a punch. 

Stick To Your Guns made their mark in the scene years ago, but something about them is always refreshing. Hardcore is a genre on a steady resurgence, and it’s easy to understand why. The set contained mostly classics such as “ Amber “ to spark memories in the crowd. The anger was obvious, but the band always has a way of bringing everyone in a room together. 

I can never stop suggesting Beartooth to anyone. Caleb Shomo has a voice that fills you with every emotion you could feel. The production of orange lights and fog created a vibe that made you want to move. Crowdsurfers made my job as a photographer difficult, but even my fellow photographers in the photo pit couldn’t help but bang their heads. Classic metal riffs with the anger and punch of a new hardcore band, Beartooth is a treat every single time. 

Few bands can pack a punch for over a decade. Motionless in White have the honor of being within those select few. The ambiance before they even walked on stage was enough to send shocks through the crowd. The spooky purple and blue lighting, strobes, and the skeletons on the stage, the band was sure to come out with a bang. Motionless mixes old songs with new, but the crowd knew the words to everything. Frontman Chris Motionless works the crowd into an angry and violent pit every single time, yet expresses his love and appreciation the entire time. With heavy hitters like Devils Night and Abigail, the crowd had plenty of energy to burn before the softer side of things came out towards the end with Another Life and Eternally Yours. The entire show was a mix of beauty, chaos, and spooky vibes. 

The Diseased and Disguised tour was an incredible start to the 2020 metal-core tour season. No mixed genres were needed to carry this tour around different fan bases. Solid, to the point heavy music was all it took to sell out shows, and created what I can say is one of the best shows I’ve been too.

Photos + review courtesy of Emily Sulkowski

Keep up with us on social media: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

 

Keeping NEPA Strange an Interview w/ Josh Balz by Emily Sulkowski

 

Being odd is typical for artists. It’s what makes us all unique. Josh Balz took the idea of odd and amplified it. Owner of the Strange and Unusual Oddities Parlor in Kingston and Philadelphia, PA, Josh has certainly added a little gem to the often dreary North East, PA. I sat down with him to talk about how life has been after his transition from being in a touring band to running his store full time.

I started by asking if the transition from touring to being grounded back in PA was strange?

“ I love the area, I grew up here and always lived here.” He says.

He certainly thought the transition was strange, since the hectic touring life took a lot out of a person, “ I never felt busy, I felt like I wasn’t doing enough, since I was only running the store, not doing both.” He said while talking about reconfiguring his life after leaving his band.

I asked about his music, Strange Kids, which he’s released two singles under, and more importantly if he was releasing more music, “ I’d like to, it’s more of a hobby right now.” Genre wise, Strange Kids and Motionless in White are very different. Josh said, “ It’s all based on my emotions, what I’m feeling at the time.”
In NEPA, Josh is somewhat of a hometown hero. I asked him if support from local fans had ever changed after coming home. “ I think there’s more support now. The store and Motionless have the same vibe. It goes hand in hand.” His employees at the store said his fair share of fans still come in, excited to meet him. Fans and locals alike still love the shop, enjoying how different it is among the repetitiveness the Valley seems to see often.

Owning a store like this comes from a love for weird things. “ I always enjoyed them (oddities). The stuff comes from all over. A lot of vintage taxidermy” He said when I asked how he finds his unique items, “ It’s definitely a process.”

In a town full of pizza shops, I wondered how a shop selling human bones and spell books does so well, “ I wanted to do something different here,” Josh said when I asked what inspired him, “ Everyone told me I was going to fail.”

Balz said that the shop does very well, being able to sell such unique, incredible items and still stay afloat, where in a huge city it would be difficult. Having the backing he did, it’s no surprise the shop is well loved and received. While wrapping things up, I asked him how it feels to know his music and his parlor help so many people. Being weird isn’t always easy, and he’s always made people like him feel a little less like outsiders. I asked if he ever wanted to have that effect on people. “ Always. I’ve always been a very supportive person. I love helping other people.”

Josh has always encouraged people to be themselves, and be interested in unique things. He’s very proud of who he is, and everything he’s built. “ I hope people come in, to see the shop and try the cafe.”

The Strange and Unusual Oddities Parlor sits at 467 Wyoming Avenue in Kingston, Pennsylvania. Now boasting a Harry Potter themed cafe called Steamy Hallows, serving cookies, Butter Brew coffee and hot chocolate covered in glitter, The Strange and Unusual is a little gem in a town that people seem to forget. Give the shop a visit, buy a skull or two with your coffee, and never be afraid to be a little weird.

Interview courtesy of Emily Sulkowski  | SHOP NOW :  The Strange and Unusual

Follow Josh Balz here

 

 

The End Is Here : NYC Tour Review

teih-tour

On January 27th, I attended my first show of 2017. I got to attend “The End Is Here” tour. It was an honor to start this year off with these three amazing bands, Falling In Reverse, Issues and Motionless In White. On tour, they had the help of upcoming bands Dead Girls Academy and Dangerkids as opening acts for the three. I must say, each band gave it their all on this night. The lighting for each set was absolutely phenomenal. My friend and I bought VIP for the show, with VIP we got to meet all three main acts. Meet and greet with Falling In Reverse went pretty quick, The guys in Issues made the time to talk to each fan and greet them very kindly. But when we got to Motionless In White, they stopped meeting the fans after I guess a certain time limit, so we did not get to meet them. Did not receive any of the merchandise to come with the package as well. VIP was very messy, there were three lines for each act. I feel we should have received what we paid for to seem fair. No big deal to us though. First time ever hearing Dead Girls Academy and Dangerkids, I was in shock with their stage presence. Very energetic. Issues, Motionless In White and Falling In Reverse had fantastic stage presence as well. Each band had a theme for their set, which was pretty amazing. Overall, the whole show was killer. Bravo to each band and the members for giving it their all. Such a fun night, I suggest catching this tour when it hits a city near you.

Review by : Gina Castaldi

Throwback Thursday : Warped Tour 2016

Vans Warped Tour | 7/21/16 | Riverbend Music Center Cincinnati, OH
Photos by : Chyenne Conner
You can view Chyenne’s work : here

 The Camera Affect Promotions |Instagram | Twitter | Youtube

Motionless In White | Vans Warped Tour 2016

 The Camera Affect Promotions | Instagram  | Twitter | Youtube

Photography by : C.Trimarco Photography