Bleeding Through | Welcome Back Show 2018

 6/8/18 | The Observatory

Photos courtesy of : Jamie Kaufman 

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Bleeding Through – Welcome Back Show | Review

6/8/18 | Venue: The Observatory Orange County in Santa Ana, CA

     Bleeding Through is back and better than ever. The band that pioneered the metal-core genre went on hiatus in 2013. With their newest album “Love Will Kill All”, released this year, 2018, via Sharptone Records, they sharpened their sound and brought a whole new level of raw talent to the table. With this being their first show in five years, and with the talented support they got for this one-day event, I knew it would be truly amazing.

          The opening band was Iron Curtain, local to the Inland Empire in Southern California. This band mixes grindcore and hardcore genres together perfectly. They played a 25-minute set, that was truly amazing. They released their album “The Road” independently in 2017, their setlist pulled from that release. I was thoroughly impressed with this band and will definitely be going to one of their shows again.

          The next band to take the stage was, Too Pure to Die. This hardcore metal act, hailing from Des Moines, Iowa, surely came in to showcase all they had to offer. Their 30-minute set showcased songs from their entire discography. Their most recent release was their EP “Only the True Remain”, which they released independently. The band played without their vocalist, as he was in the hospital awaiting surgery. So, bassist Joe Ellis filled in on vocals for the day and absolutely slayed it. It was as if he was made to be a frontman, as he commanded the stage with ease. They gained a new fan, me.

          The infamous Lionheart was next to grace the stage, coming to us from Northern California. Lionheart played an incredible set. They had a lot of energy from the start. Their newest album “Welcome to the West Coast II”, released in 2017 via Fast Break! Records, is amazing. I’m glad they played a few songs from this release. This is another hardcore band I hadn’t heard of much before, but I recently bought a ton of their albums. I would certainly recommend checking them out, as they are stellar.

          The biggest supporting act was none other than Winds of Plague. This was my second time seeing the deathcore and symphonic metalcore fusion act and they never disappoint when I see them live. They played songs off all their releases. However, the two releases that received the most coverage on this show were “Decimate the Weak”, released in 2008 via Century Media, and “Blood of My Enemy”, released in 2017 via EOne Records and Good Fight Records. Keyboardist and second vocalist Adrienne Cowan flew in from being on tour with one of her other bands, Seven Spires, just to play this date. They always give me goosebumps when I see them, as their music is truly amazing. If you haven’t listened to them, I recommend it. This is certainly a band I will go see whenever I can.

          The headlining band was the one and only Bleeding Through. They played the longest set I’ve seen live, consisting of 20 songs. They played songs off 7 of their 8 albums, and played 6 songs alone off the newest album, which is my personal favorite. The venue was completely sold out, with fans going wild for the band. I have never seen a venue so jampacked, except for when I saw the Back to the Basics tour with Blessthefall, and the floors were all covered with sweat after the show. Anyways, what I loved about their song choices was that it covered the full variety of what Bleeding Through is all about. Bleeding Through has a signature sound, that perfectly blends together metalcore with melodic death metal. So, some songs have clean vocals, but some do not. They chose a perfect mix and put on one of the best sets I’ve ever seen live. I cannot wait to see this band live again.

          What I will say about this night though is that the crowd was perfectly fine for every band up until Winds of Plague. That’s when the crowd-surfing truly started. I got pushed to the ground with my camera by a crowd-surfer, while I was in the photo pit. One guy actually landed on my camera, which was scary. Luckily my camera was not damaged, but I screamed out bloody murder. Also, the entire night, the venue did not put the usual 3-song rule in place for photographers. It wasn’t until Bleeding Through came on that they decided to put this rule through, so I shot 3 songs in the pit, and the rest with my telephoto lens from the crowd, which worked out pretty well. Seeing all of these bands made those issues I dealt with worth it. I wanted to personally thank Brandon Schieppati and all of Bleeding Through for this opportunity and I hope to be able to photograph for you guys again soon.

Review courtesy of : Jamie Kaufman 

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Winds Of Plague & Suicide Silence | The Cleansing Tour 2017

  Whisky A Go-Go | 12/17/17

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Photography courtesy of  Jamie Kaufman

Suicide Silence – 10 Years of The Cleansing Tour 12/17/17 Review 

In many genres, we can all picture in our heads that one album that defines what a genre is and sets the bar for what future releases for the genre should be. Suicide Silence’s album The Cleansing is just that for the deathcore genre. This album is iconic for so many reasons: the dynamics, the distinct vocal stylings of Mitch Lucker, and the lyrics that drew people in. This iconic album hit its 10-year mark, which meant the band would go on tour in support of this release, along with some amazing bands supporting them. With a 40-day tour, and this being the last date, I knew we were in for a treat.

While there were some local opening acts, the first official band from the tour was Prison. Now, Prison has an interesting story. This was their very first tour, they came out on that stage and killed it. They played every song off their debut EP titled “N.G.R.I”. Also, Prison was the only unsigned band on the tour, which is very cool to see. I feel they will become signed very soon, as they have the talent and passion to get there. Prison speaks about issues a lot of people and bands are scared to talk about: suicide, depression, the struggles we go through on a day to day basis. The lead singer, especially, has a deep life story about depression that hit me deep to my core. It meant the world to hear a band speak boldly about conquering depression, and deriving their whole being from how to overcome that depression. It was amazing to see just an emotion-driven performance, filled with amazing crowd participation.

The next band up was the infamous Upon a Burning Body. This was my third time seeing this band and they always have some of the best stage presence I’ve ever seen. Playing songs from their whole discography, it was amazing to see them light up the stage. Though mainly backlit, it was fun to shoot their set. They chose a perfect eight-song set, spreading the songs out almost equally through their 4 albums, although 3 songs came from their most recent release “Straight From The Barrio”, via Sumerian Records. I knew they were amazing live, but out of the three times I’ve seen them, this was by far the best I’ve seen them play live. They were on fire out there.

The second to last band up was Winds of Plague. Now, I have a fun story, I met the members outside before the show and they were so down to earth and happy to meet people. I brought every album from their discography, as well as an album from their keyboardist Adrienne Cowan’s other band Seven Spires, which made her, and the rest of the band, very happy. When it came to the performance on stage, they were brilliant from head to toe. With a ten-song set, with songs from most of their five-album discography, they were filled with energy, fire, and talent. I was extremely excited to watch them play, as I had been waiting to see Winds of Plague since I got into them back in 2011 from playing Rock Band on my Xbox. Their newest release “Blood Of My Enemy”, release on EOne Music, is their best release to date, and what they played from it last night proves just that. Winds of Plague is back and better than ever.

The final band on was the one and only Suicide Silence. This was my second time seeing the legends of deathcore and they did not disappoint. Being the 10-year anniversary tour for their very first album, they knew they had to go out hard. Vocalist Eddie Hermida did his part to scream those vocals out hard, in memorial of previous vocalist Mitch, who died in a motorcycle accident November 1st, 2012. That incident shook the fanbase to the core, but the band continued with Eddie as the new vocalist. Since then, they released two albums with Eddie, the newest being the self-titled “Suicide Silence” via Nuclear Blast Records. On every date, the band played The Cleansing in its entirety, being twelve songs. Along with the twelve songs, they played three encore songs, being off three out of four of their other releases. I was blown away to see how on fire they were with these songs, as well as how identical Eddie was able to make his vocals sound to Mitch’s with these songs. At the end of the set, drummer Alex Lopez smashed his drum set and Chris Garza set his guitar on fire and then smashed it to pieces. Both members threw their instruments into the crowd, which resulted in people in the crowd fighting over pieces of broken guitar and drum parts.

Overall, it was an amazing show to attend and I’m so grateful to have covered it.

Review courtesy of Jamie Kaufman 

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