The Rise Up Tour rose to its full potential during its Halloween tour stop in Mesa, Arizona. The show was opened up with local band At My Mercy and jokesters Like Moths to Flames. Silverstein, Memphis May Fire, and The Devil Wears Prada round out the main acts. The audience was geared up for a night of heavy music, and disappointed they were not.
At My Mercy kicked off the show by surprise. It was actually a surprise - when their set started, the crowd seemed to have no idea what was going on. Guitar riffs and screaming filled the air, and the set began without warning. Vocalist Bobby Radonovich, bassist Casey Jeffers, guitarist Josh Kasten, and guitarist Frankie Ghiloni played a fairly short set, but what they played was decent. Having a female band member made them stand out, but other than that, they were just an average local metal band. It also didn’t help that half of the group looked disinterested in the performance. The lack luster stage presence of a few members did not engage the audience. Some of the people in the front row head banged along to the group - a couple even knew the words to the songs - but no one was all that impressed. Maybe their other songs are better. For anyone looking for another Classic Metal band should definitely check out At My Mercy. They have great technique, but could use some work.
YouTube | Alone – At My Mercy
The moment vocalist Chris Roetter, bassist Aaron Evans, guitarist Jeremy Smith, and drummer Greg Diamond of Like Moths to Flames took the stage dressed as the characters from Bob’s Burgers, the audience was in for a treat. Hailing from Columbus, Ohio, the group brought a great mix of Metal and Hardcore to Mesa. The passion that poured from Roetter’s edgy voice pushed the crowd over the edge. The floor opened up and the music got people moving. Along with Roetter’s massive presence, the power and energy emitted by the rest of the band really played into the performance. The band had a great time, thus so did the audience. Like Moths to Flames knows how to put on a spectacular show, and they did not fail to deliver that night.
YouTube | Fighting Fire With Fire – (Official Music Video)
Dressed as the infamous hipster condiment Sriracha, a beer bottle, a carrot, and other various foods came Silverstein. Canadian vocalist Shane Told, drummer Paul Koehler, bassist Bill Hamilton, guitarist Paul Marc Rousseau, and guitarist Josh Bradford brought their Emo Post-Hardcore sound to The Nile. The band’s set got off to a rough start: the sound system lost power, but that did not slow them down. They filled the space with bad puns and dad jokes. Shortly after the joking around, the power was restored and the band could continue on as normal. Silverstein held nothing back as their Emo music reached the audience. People were moshing and crowd surfing, and the band interacted with them. Told even went as far as letting audience members who jumped on stage sing with him. It was a fast-paced set that was very enjoyable to watch. The music had an Emo feel, but wasn’t Emo to the point of intolerance. Silverstein did not disappoint with their performance.
YouTube | Ghost – Silverstein (Official Music Video)
Go, Go Power Rangers should have been the tune Memphis May Fire was singing at the show. Vocalist Matty Mullins, lead guitarist Kellen McGregor, drummer Jake Garland, guitarist Anthony Sepe, and bassist Cory Elder used their Christian Hardcore Rock and Power Ranger Halloween costumes to wow the crowd. Memphis May Fire is a great band for anyone to see live whether or not they like Hardcore Rock, but this was not their best performance. While it’s understandable that the band wore costumes in celebration of the ever-popular holiday, it was really annoying during Memphis May Fire’s set. The usual emotion that shows on Mullins’ face and in his voice was not as prevalent as it could have been. His costume shielded his face and emotionally shielded him from his audience. The band’s songs “No Ordinary Love” and “Miles Away” are packed full of raw feelings, and a bit of the magic was lost. However, the band still played a great set. Just like during Silverstein, audience members were having the time of their lives crowd-surfing onto stage and interacting with the band. Mullins even posed for selfies with fans during the set. Although their show was not as stellar as it could have been, Memphis May Fire is a gifted group and they will definitely continue to be prominent in the rock scene.
YouTube | This Light I Hold feat. Jacoby Shaddix — Memphis May Fire (Official Music Video)
As soon as lights dimmed for the beginning of The Devil Wears Prada’s set, a pit opened up and the crowd moshed. The hype had already set in, and everyone was ready for vocalist Mike Hranica, guitarist and vocalist Jeremy DePoyster, bassist Andy Trick, and drummer Kyle Sipress’ Christian Hardcore Metal music. Christian music and Hardcore music don’t appear to go together at first glance, but The Devil Wears Prada doesn’t let either genre over power the other. Christian music on this scene usually just means there is no swearing in the songs, but The Devil Wears Prada has some spiritual undertones. That message coupled with good, unclean vocals sets them apart from some other bands. One of the greatest things about The Devil Wears Prada is the fact that they exhibit a high level of maturity and have taken the time to hone their craft. Some bands in this scene get very dramatic when their career starts to take off, but The Devil Wears Prada has not let fame get to them. They still cherish the idea of making great songs and just being themselves. Their entire set came off as genuine, and how much the band enjoys making music is more noticeable than everything else. The Devil Wears Prada was by far the best group of the night, and their level of talent surpasses the book and movie in which the group acquired their namesake.
YouTube | To The Key Of Evergreen – The Devil Wears Prada (Official Music Video)
Maybe it was the fact that it was Halloween, or maybe these bands are just inherently good. The show was full of amazing songs and even more amazing people bringing their heart and soul to the stage. The drive and eagerness to succeed was palpable and made The Rise Up Tour more than worthwhile.
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