The Relapse Symphony at The Canal Club

The Relapse Symphony at The Canal Club

On Saturday, December 19th, The Relapse Symphony had their first headlining show at The Canal Club in Richmond, Virginia. This holiday hometown show gave them a chance to perform a longer set with older songs. Many fans traveled at least a few hours in order to make the show. The concert began with local bands Idiot Proof and GI9, as well as Phantoms. All three bands got the crowd moving and excited for the next band to take the stage.

A minute before 8:30, The Relapse Symphony took the stage. The band immediately started with their instrumental introduction, “The Beginning.” Once lead singer Bret Von Dehl walked onto the stage, they began “A Perfect Lie.” From the first word to the last, fans in the crowd were singing along. Most of the people in the crowd had been supporting the band for years, and they knew what an important milestone this show was in the band’s career. The band and the whole crowd kept moving throughout the whole ten song set. The set list included a cover of The Ramones’ “Blitzkrieg Bop.” The band played songs off of their first EP and two albums, including their newest, Born To Burn. During one of their songs, “We Are The Broken,” Von Dehl invited fans on stage to sing along with the band. Many fans jumped up, leaving the mosh pit that broke out sporadically throughout the show. The Relapse Symphony closed up their set with “Panic! (Time’s Running Out),” ending their first headlining set with one of their oldest songs. It was obvious that everybody, from the audience to the bands, had a perfect night filled with music.

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All That Remains at Rams Head Live

All That Remains at Rams Head Live

On Sunday, December 13th, The Order Of Things came to Rams Head Live in Baltimore, Maryland. The headliner, All That Remains, was supported by Devour The Day, Audiotopsy, and Sons of Texas. The venue expected a wild show and took precautions against it, making sure to stamp every attendee’s left forearm with a “no crowd surfing” stamp as a warning. Based on the amount of tickets sold before doors opened, not that many people were anticipated to show up. The large balcony in the venue were closed off to people walking around during the show. Fans still had fun, moshing along to each of the four bands that night.

The first band on the stage was Sons of Texas. They had a few fans in the crowd singing along to the six songs that they played that night. At the start of their third song, the band’s guitarist got off the stage and began playing the song in the space between the stage and the crowd, helping to further draw fans into the show. They made sure to play one of their singles, “Baptized In the Rio Grande,” which many people had heard on the Sirius XM radio station Octane. The band thanked the radio station for playing their songs, as well as all the fans for listening and coming out early to catch their set.

Next was Audiotopsy. This four piece group consists of members from other bands, such as Skrape, Mudvayne, and Hellyeah. The band got the crowd even more warmed up, calling out a few people for “trying” to start a mosh pit. With the band’s encouragement, a pit broke out a couple of times in the latter half of their six song set. Even with a few technical mishaps with the sound, the band still had fans moving the whole time they were on stage.

The third band on was Devour The Day. The band from Memphis, Tennessee had many fans in the crowd and there was a mosh pit in the center of the crowd for most of their set. There was even one crowd surfer, breaking the rule given by the venue. It was obvious that the band paid attention to the crowd. They called out one man in the front row who looked bored, and they encouraged him to get into the music. During their last song, “Good Man,” lead singer Blake Allison got off the stage and stood on the barricade against the crowd. Devour The Day performed both old and new songs during their nine song set.

All That Remains was the last band that night. They played 14 songs during their set, which lasted about 50 minutes. The stage was well lit up, but the lights may have been too much, causing people standing close to the stage and in the back of the venue to not be able to see well. The band played songs off of six of their albums, including their current single, “Victory Lap.” A music video was recently released for the song. Lead singer Philip Labonte leaned off the stage to grab the hands of members of the audience as they sang along with him. The band ended with “Two Weeks,” bringing the weekend to a close.

DC 101’s Holiday Concert at EagleBank Arena

DC 101’s Holiday Concert at EagleBank Arena

On Thursday, December 3rd, 2015, local radio station DC 101 had their annual holiday concert at EagleBank Arena at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. Exactly a year ago, the inaugural show took place, and Rise Against, A Day To Remember, Manchester Orchestra, and a few other bands played in the same venue. The 2015 show consisted of The Struts, New Politics, Bastille, AWOLNATION, and headliners Fall Out Boy. Within 24 hours of tickets going on sale, all of the tickets for the general admission floor area had sold out. By the time of the show, the only available tickets were for seats high up in the stadium. Fans lined up early to get good spots in the crowd, most of them teenage girls. Quite a few of them arrived at 10:00 A.M. and waited in the cold until doors opened at 5:00 that evening. Many of them skipped school, proud of what they did to get front row at the concert. “Hey, I’m homeschooled,” one girl said, saying that she still technically skipped school to arrive early. The girls also spoke of other fans who had gotten to the venue the night before the show and camped out overnight. Even though those dedicated fans showed up early, there were still only about a thousand people in the venue at 5:45, less than an hour after the doors opened. The venue expected many people to show up, as the Fire Marshal was coming to the show to make sure that everything was safe and that everybody had a good show.

On first was The Struts. They went on promptly at 6:00, when people were still coming in the venue. The four band member made sure to get the crowd involved, having fans clap, wave their hands, and sing along. None of the bands had that much time to perform, and The Struts were only on stage for less than half an hour. Nonetheless, the band still encouraged the audience to put all their energy into the set, just like how the band did the same.

Next up was New Politics. The three members spent their eight song set dancing and jumping around the stage. Lead singer David Boyd even jumped off the stage and stood on the barricade at the front of the crowd. Boyd and guitarist Søren Hansen continually stood on the large speakers in between the stage and the audience, putting them closer to their screaming fans. During their third song, “50 Feet Tall,” Boyd put down him microphone and started dancing to the music, encouraging his fans to do the same.

The third band was Bastille, a four-piece group from England. At the start of their set, lead singer Dan Smith leapt off the stage and went into the crowd, moving with the audience as they paused to take pictures or videos of the moment. Many people at the show had heard at least one of their songs, such as “Pompeii”, whether on the radio, on a television show, or playing in the background at a store. Throughout their set, Smith continued to step onto the speakers closer to the crowd, continually drawing the audience into the music.

The fourth band of the night was AWOLNATION. They are a five-piece electronic rock band from Los Angeles, California. Their single, “Sail,” peaked at number 17 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The group ended their set with that song, and played seven other songs that fans loved during the limited amount of time that the band had. They performed for slightly less than an hour and fans jumped around to the music the whole time.

Fall Out Boy was the last band that performed that night. The four-piece group from Chicago, Illinois is going on tour next year with AWOLNATION, as well as another band, PVRIS. A list of all of their tour dates can be found here. Fall Out Boy started their set was an older song of theirs, “Sugar, We’re Goin’ Down.” Right from the first line, the arena was filled with fans yelling the lyrics back at the band. Their set list consisted of both old and new songs, such as their current single, “Uma Thurman.” The band had just come from performing at the National Christmas Tree Lighting at the White House in Washington, D.C. Bassist Pete Wentz mentioned that and explained that they wanted to choose a Christmas song to perform. The band then went into a cover of Charlie Brown’s “Christmas Time Is Here.” Fall Out Boy seemed to end their set a bit abruptly. The venue had said that the band was scheduled to end at 11:30, but they left the stage at 11:15. Fall Out Boy played one of their new songs, “Centuries,” as their last, leaving both their old and new fans satisfied with their performance that night.

Falling In Reverse at The Fillmore Silver Spring

Falling In Reverse at The Fillmore Silver Spring

On Wednesday, November 25th, 2015, the Supervillains Tour came to The Fillmore in Silver Spring, Maryland. This tour had headliners Falling In Reverse, as well as Attila, Metro Station, and Assuming We Survive. Even though the show was on the night before Thanksgiving, a good number of fans lined up outside the venue hours before doors were set to open. The show did not sell that well though. About 800 tickets were sold for the 2,000-capacity venue. As fans were entering The Fillmore, one of the security guards remarked that it seemed like there were 600 girls for every 200 guys that went through the doors. Once inside, there seemed to be a pretty even divide between the genders.

The first band on was Assuming We Survive. The five-piece group from California spent a lot of their six song set interacting with the crowd. Lead singer Adrian Estrella came off the stage and stood on the barricade by the audience during parts of multiple songs. After the set, the members of the band could be seen walking around the venue. Though they were the band that the least amount of people in the crowd had heard of, Assuming We Survive had gained many new fans by the end of the crowd.

Up next was Metro Station. Many people knew this band due to their 2008 single, “Shake It,” which peaked in the top-ten on three US charts. The band is Trace Cyrus, the brother of Miley Cyrus, and Mason Musso, the brother of Mitchel Musso. The band broke up in 2010, but reformed in 2014. They were on Vans Warped Tour during summer 2015, gaining many new fans in the scene. Their new album, Savior, features “Getting Over You,” a single with Ronnie Radke, lead singer of Falling In Reverse. During their set at The Fillmore, Metro Station played seven songs, ending the performance with their hit single, “Shake It.” That was one of the songs by them that most of the crowd knew, but they made the most of it, dancing and singing along to the words they’ve known for the past seven years. After the show, when asked how it went, Musso said “great,” and Cyrus said that it went fantastic, proving that it was a good night for all.

The third band on was Attila. The four members from Atlanta, Georgia, made sure to mention the last time that they had performed a show in Maryland, making the fans feel loved and remembered. Attila said that this had been the best show of the tour, due to the immense amount of crowd participation that they had. Lead singer Chris “Fronz” Fronzak asked for as many people as possible to crowd surf, saying he would high-five them when they got to the front of the venue. He also told the crowd to start various types of mosh pits, such as circle pits and a wall of death. The 11 songs that they played came from all four of their albums. They were the only band that night that referenced the holiday the next day. Even though many people had to spend the next day with their families, celebrating Thanksgiving, fans still put all their energy forth during Attila’s set.

The headlining band of the night was Falling In Reverse. They started their set with “God, If You Are Above…” off of their newest album, Just Like You. For that song, there was a white curtain covering the stage, leaving the crowd with only silhouettes of the band. After that song, the curtain came down, reveal all five members of the band from Las Vegas, Nevada, to the audience. The 16 songs played that night came from all three of the band’s albums, along with two covers from lead singer Ronnie Radke’s previous band, Escape The Fate. For one of those songs, “Situations,” Radke kept starting the song over and over again until the crowd screamed the lyrics back as loud as they could. At another point in the set, Radke warned fans to get ready as they were about to play their heaviest song. That was all a joke, as the band went into a song from their 2013 album, Fashionably Late, the pop-influenced “Bad Girls Club.” On November 30th, right before the tour started on November 4th, it was announced that lead guitarist Jacky Vincent was leaving the band. This tour was the fans’ first taste of his replacement, Christian Thompson. During the 16 songs that they played, the audience was able to see Falling In Reverse perform at their best and know that the band will always prevail.