Author and Photographer: Catherine Patchell
This past Friday, December 15th, marked the final show for Vanna. The sold-out show was held at The Palladium in Worcester, MA, a venue that the band played countless times throughout their career. Vanna is known for putting on an explosive, high-energy show, but for this final one, they outdid themselves.
Supporting Vanna on the Main Stage for their farewell show included Actor | Observer, Currents, Lions Lions, Like Pacific, Knocked Loose, and Eighteen Visions (yeah, that's right, they're back). But one stage was not enough space for the massive celebration, so the Upstairs of the Palladium was open as well to house an additional set of talent. This included Roseview, Sharptooth, END, Kublai Khan, On Broken Wings, and Old Wounds. Ever since I was first introduced to Vanna, I have seen them constantly work to build up the scene and promote an inclusive environment for everyone. It was no surprise to hear Davey Muise (vocals) note during their set that they had handpicked the lineup and brought together a group of bands that they fully endorsed to help celebrate that night.
The hour and a half set was no less than an emotional rollercoaster filled with an extensive set list spanning the band's lengthy discography. Lining the left and right sides of the stage, friends and family stood close by for the entire show. It wasn't long into the set that it became apparent that this show was about to turn into an even larger family affair. The plot twist of the night (which Vanna successfully kept under wraps for the weeks leading up to the show) was that ALL THREE generations of Vanna lead vocalists would be taking to the mic alongside former guitarists and drummers.
Chris Preece was the first to surprise the audience and was greeted with a roaring round of cheers as he emerged onto the stage. As a few more songs were played more and more former members cycled into the set - original lead vocalist Joe Bragel, lead guitarist/clean vocalist Evan Pharmakis, drummers Brandon Davis and Eric Gross. I can not have imagined a better way to have celebrated the Vanna family and music they created over the years.
As an emotional Muise said "Thank You, Goodnight" to the crowd for the last time, many were left with a hole in their hearts. Though Friday marked an end to Vanna, the impact they have had on so many will not be forgotten.
Thank YOU - Goodnight, Vanna.
The Few And The Far Between
The Lost Art of Staying Alive
Year of the Rat
Let’s Have An Earthquake
We Ate The Horse You Rode In On
A Dead Language For A Dying Lady
Safe To Say
Piss Up A Rope
I Am The Wind, You Are The Feather
Author and Photographer: Ian Urquhart
Doors opened the Worcester Palladium at 5:45 PM. At 5:15 PM, a five-block line patiently waited to gain entrance to an anticipated night of metal. This was to be expected with Trivium and Arch Enemy co-headlining the evening’s festivities. However, before these metal vets took the stage, a few other bands wanted to make their presence known.
First to the stage: Fit For An Autopsy.
As the first band to initiate the evening’s events, Fit For An Autopsy opened the metal flood gates as well as the pit. There were no secretes about these New Jersey natives. They came to slay. Initiate: Death Metal. Featuring one of their heaviest hits “Absolute Hope Absolute Hell” off Absolute Hope Absolute Hell (2015), Worcester was given a loud wake up call to get moving, sweating, jumping and screaming. It worked. Warm-up: complete.
Next on the bill: While She Sleeps.
While far away from home, the Sheffield boys brought everything but the kitchen sink to Massachusetts. Lead by their intensely dedicated vocalist, Lawrence Taylor, gravity seemed to be non-existent. Guitar flips. Stage dives and drum leaps are what could be found during a While She Sleeps set. Persevering through microphone difficulties, nothing stopped the UK metal-heads from melting faces. What drove the crowd into a circling frenzy was their banger “Brainwashed” off of Brainwashed (2015). Coming off a recent headlining tour across-the-pond, it’s clear to see why people are drinking the While She Sleeps kool-aid.
Soon to follow: Trivium.
“Trivium! Trivium! Trivium!”
The crowd could have been heard from Lansdowne Street. A switch was flipped. The Palladium’s energy thickened as Matt Heafy, lead vocalist/guitarist, and the rest of the Florida rockers opened a Trivium can of whoop-ass while performing their newest single “The Sin and Sentence” off of The Sin and Sentence (2017). Conceptualizing the fact that hundreds of fans were witnessing legends was heavy enough; let alone Trivium’s breakdowns. “Like Light to the Flies” off of Ascendancy (2005) has easily been one of the most recognizable Trivium tracks to have been recorded. This being said… the general admission floor almost split in half when this record ripped the stage. Even the photographers couldn’t help but to sing along. And what better way to end a set than to have hundreds of headbangers jump in synchronous. Heroes get remembered, Trivium never dies.
In Conclusion: Arch Enemy.
After co-headliner number one stepped behind the curtain, surely there wasn’t enough energy for another hour-long set...
Goodness gracious did Arch Enemy deliver. With one of the most distinct, impressive and unique voices, Alissa White-Gluz, lead vocalist, made her presence known. Accompanied by two guitar-shredding pros, Michael Amott and Jeff Loomis, there was still fuel in the Worcester tank to bring it up a notch. “War Eternal” off of War Eternal (2014) triggered a floor wide mosh-pit our mothers and fathers would have been proud of. No one remained still. Absolute chaos. Even with broken in-ear-monitors, these Swedes knew what it took to perform and follow up bands like Fit For An Autopsy, While She Sleeps and Trivium. If you are contemplating going to an Arch Enemy show in the near future..
.. Do it!
Review by Camran Ferrier; Photos by Jordan Lindley
The Orpheum Theatre was a fitting venue for Evanescence to take the stage with a full orchestra to perform their newest record, Synthesis. This is their first album since 2011, and it showcases a collection of the bands music reimagined with orchestral and electronic elements added. The album itself is set to drop on November 10th, but the show was a sensational display with tantalizing lighting as a backdrop for this epic pairing, and they delivered in full to a packed house in downtown Boston.
It is not common for an alternative rock band to open their shows with a performance of Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight Sonata’, but when a live orchestra is your support then you can afford such a luxury. There have been other bands that have used a live orchestra in their performances, Metallica’s ‘S&M’ album jumps to mind, but Evanescence made it their own and used it to spectacular effect when performing their new album in its entirety.
The orchestra complimented Amy Lee’s hauntingly beautiful vocals seamlessly, and the audience was on their feet when the band started playing ‘Bring Me To Life’. A perfect example of how a record released in 2003 can still hold its own in 2017. The set ranged from intense, electronic drumbeats to beautiful melodies floating over a soft piano- a dynamic and versatile performance that was incredibly entertaining to watch.
‘Synthesis’ is to be released on November 10th, and going off of the tracks currently available as well as the performance on Sunday night it will be something inspiring. Don’t be fooled into thinking Evanescence are just nostalgia to your teenage years, they are still going strong and I would highly recommend trying to catch them on this tour. Check out the dates below for upcoming shows!
11/7 - Sands Bethlehem Event Center - Bethlehem, PA
11/8 - Hippodrome Theatre - Baltimore, MD
11/10 - Kings Theatre- Brooklyn, NY
11/30 - Chicago Theatre - Chicago, IL
12/2 - The Palladium - Carmel, IN
12/5 - State Theatre - Minneapolis, MN
12/6 - Orpheum Theatre - Madison, WI
12/8 - Sony Centre for the Performing Arts - Toronto, Ontario
12/9 - Caesar's Windsor - Windsor, Ontario
12/11 - Kansas City Music Hall - Kansas City, MO
12/13 - Paramount Theatre - Denver, CO
12/15 - Grand Theatre at the Grand Sierra Resort - Reno, NV
12/16 - Masonic Auditorium - San Francisco, CA
12/19 - Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall - Portland, OR
Author and Photographer: Ian Urquhart
A heavy hitting lineup awaited the city of Worcester, Massachusetts on an unseasonably warm October Friday evening. Lines extended from block to block while Spotify playlists provided the before-show entertainment.
First on the ticket: Escape the Fate.
Holy 2009. Escape the Fate brought the, “middle school” out of everyone while these Vegas rockers came out swinging. Opening the set, Kevin “Thrasher” Gruft flexed his finger muscles ripping a solo during the performance of “Just a Memory” off of Hate Me (2015). Cable whips, stick flips and devil horns were on full display. However, like any band that has been around for quite some time knows, there were a lot of dedicated fans present waiting for, “their old stuff.” Que, “This War is Ours (The Guillotine 2)” off of This War is Ours (2008). So much movement. So much nostalgia.
Next up: The Word Alive.
Feeling a bit under the weather, Telle Smith (lead vocalist) showed little to no hinderance opening the evening with their most recent single Misery (2017). The breakdowns these Pheonix natives produced almost put holes through the walls. Even performing through a few technical and health difficulties, the Worcester crowd provided enough backing vocals to leave The Word Alive with a full-hearted appreciation for the cities of Worcester and Boston. Telle took a few moments to express his gratitude for how accommodating the State of Massachusetts has always been. This fueled and ignited the most intense circle pit of the evening while “Trapped” off of Dark Matter (2016) rocked and sent the Arizona boys home with a smile.
Next up: We Came As Romans.
October 20th, 2017 was a special day for the 313 lads. Not only did they return to Worcester, but their most recent album was released earlier that afternoon - Cold LIke War (2017). Speaking of which, “Cold Like War” off of Cold Like War provided a modulated punch to the face as the opening track. Additionally, there was a pleasant surprise-showing of “Glad you Came” off the Pop Goes Punk Volume (2012). In many ways, this caught those attending off guard but in the best way possible. As a going away present, Kyle Pavone (clean vocalist, pianist, synthesist) asked for the crowd’s assistance as he belted the ending verse to “Hope” off of Understanding What We’ve Grown to Be (2011) while being held up by the third row of the pit.
Completing the evening: I Prevail
Welcome to Wrestlemania - I Prevail edition. The stage set up for the Rage On The Stage tour resembled the ghosts of Royal Rumble’s past. Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, I Prevail took the stage without Brian Burkheiser (lead vocalist) due to surgical recovery. Nevertheless, they still laid the smackdown on every jabroni in the venue. Apart from performing their most popular tracks like, “Love, Lust & Liars” off of Heart V.S Mind (2014) and “RISE” off of Lifelines (2016), a few special appearances found their way into the ring. One lucky fan was given the chance to be the Boston’s heel against the I Prevail’s babyface - Dylan Bowman (guitarist). In efforts to shut down the heel, an acoustic rendition of “Get Low” by Lil Jon was dedicated to the fan’s mother. Apart from the music itself, I Prevail incorporated a wrestling role play throughout the entire set. This provided an intimate connection with the fans and band members. And with no surprise, “Scars” off of Lifelines (2016) concluded the evening’s festivities with a wall-of-death that nearly tore the floor in half.
If you have the chance to check out one of the remaining Rage On The Stage tour stops, I highly recommend wearing a DX or Stone Cold Steve Austin shirt. You might get the stunner. Can I get a hell yeah?
By Jordan Lindley
Saturday night in Somerville, MA was filled with marching drums, dancing, and more Telecasters than you could shake a Schecter at. The ONCE Ballroom hosted Half The Animal, Magic Giant, and Atlas Genius in a floor-shaking performance that had my ears ringing into the next day.
First up was Half The Animal, revving up the audience with tones like Fitz and the Tantrums and Young the Giant. The four-piece group kicked the crowd's energy into a higher gear, giving the first three rows no choice but to dance along. While their originals were exciting and well-arranged, their surprise cover of Childish Gambino's hit song Redbone brought the whole performance together.
Next came Magic Giant, who burst onto the stage with a crazy-cool blend of folk/space rock/pop/bluegrass. I could describe them as a cross between Mumford and Sons, The Lumineers, and Imagine Dragons, but there's something new in their set that none of those bands could combine to create. Between swapping instruments mid-song, breaking out two giant bass drums and a viola, and literally climbing into the middle of the crowd to do an acoustic performance, Magic Giant lifted the spirits in the room and left us wanting more. I quite literally heard a fellow audience member say "that was the best performance I have ever seen" before the headliner.
Atlas Genius took the stage to an eager crowd. The 5-piece group played everything from their first EP to a Tears For Fears cover -- no stone in their discography was left unturned. The expected hits came out like "Trojans" and "If So," as well as their newest single, 63 Days, but welcome additions to the setlist, all the same. Keep an eye out for Atlas Genius's new album, due out soon, and for more concert coverage, stick with Headrush TV!
By David McNally
September 19, 2017 – Boston, MA @ Paradise Rock Club
Only four days after the release The Stories We Tell Ourselves, Nothing Morecrashed into the Paradise Rock in Boston like a bolt of lightning.
Low UV-lighting with flashing strobes, the scene was set. One by one, Nothing Moretook to the stage and wasted no time getting right into “Christ Copyright.”
The band didn’t miss a beat and gave the eccentric audience one hell of a night to remember. From Dan Oliver’s bass solo to the band covering a Skillex’s “First of the Year” featuring Johnny Hawkins playing an instrument unlike any other I have ever seen, Nothing More left the crowd wanting more. But in traditional Nothing More fashion, the band finished the show with no encore but rather delivering every last ounce of energy they had left into a fiery version of “Salem.”
By Haley Biermann
The Melvins did not disappoint at their show at The Paradise Rock Club in Boston, Massachusetts. The rock band took the stage on August 2, and drew in a large and diverse crowd. Concert-goers trickled in within minutes of the doors opening, and less than half an hour later, the floor space and the upper level surrounding the stage were filled with eager fans of the three-piece group. With the band’s formation being in 1983, it’s not surprising there was a bit of an age range, but even those of the younger generation were pumped to see the Melvins tear it up live.
Opening for The Melvins was Spotlights, a metal duo from Brooklyn, New York. The married couple offered a laidback yet psychedelic feel created through drawn out guitar chords. Interspersed throughout the drones were more melodic guitar riffs and intense vocals from Mario Quintero. Mario Quintero’s voice made for a cool contrast to Sarah Quintero’s, which was light and airy in comparison. Overall it was a great way to start a show- an impressive sound without attempting to steal the spotlight (no pun intended).
The Melvins were greeted with an energy that one can’t doubt made them feel right at home. Lead vocalist and guitarist Buzz Osborne rocked his famous wild hairdo that almost looked as though it had a mind of its own. The band opened with “Sacrifice.” They achieved a killer hard metal sound, but with a significant amount of tour experience, make it appear effortless. While Osbourne seemed to drift around the stage with an intense seriousness, bassist Jared Warren looked ready to explode along with the booming tones his guitar produced. He often crouched low to the ground for fans to see his fingers fly across the strings.
Along with some of their hits including “It’s Shoved” and “Opinions Make the Milk Taste Bad,” the Melvins also performed some pretty awesome covers. They offered fans a hard metal version of the Beatles’ “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” and David Bowe’s “Saviour Machine.” The sound usually did not break between songs, as a drone continued straight into the next track on the set list. Rather than becoming monotonous, the fluidity made the concert similar to a theatrical performance. The Melvins seemed to say that the music would only stop when they felt like it, creating an awesome “we do whatever we want and have a great time doing it” vibe. With incredible guitar solos, on point vocals, and nonstop energy, the audience certainly wasn’t complaining, and neither were we.
By Vicky Branca
Blue Hills Bank Pavilion in the seaport of Boston, MA was the place to be Sunday night (8/6) as The All American Rejects, Dashboard Confessional, and The Maine were in town.
Despite having a quick, 7 song set, The Maine pulled in quite a crowd and die hard fans radiated excitement when the AZ natives crossed the stage.
Even while battling a fever, lead singer John O'Callaghan charmed the crowd and sang cult favorite songs like Am I Pretty, even pulling up a fan named Michaela to help him sing Girls Do What They Want. Without a flaw. While the set was short, The Maine captivated the crowd and created a fun, passionate start to the night.
The All American Rejects created a nostalgic buzz as people rushed to their seats and made sure to snap videos of iconic songs such as "Gives You Hell" "Swing Swing" "Move Along" and more.
Dressed in a blue, 70s era pantsuit, Tyson Ritter held an interesting stage presence and the set brought fans of all ages together.
And of course, Dashboard Confessional wooed the venue with their heartbreaking yet relatable lyrics. The legendary band pulled in quite the crowd and fans sang along with gusto.
Overall, the weather was warm yet breezy and the music was loud and inviting. It was the perfect summer concert.
By Chris Coutsoukis
Make no mistake about it, 311 is down for the unity. This Sunday, 311's annual 'Unity Tour' returned to Boston’s Blue Hills Bank Pavilion for a night of new music and fun in the sun.
Year after year, 'Unity Tour' has featured a diverse range of musical talent such as Sublime with Rome, Slightly Stoopid, and even Snoop Dogg. This year, 311 shook things up with the U.K.'s The Skints and New Politics, offering a fresh look and feel for the tour.
All summer long the band has been playing brand new music from their latest album, Mosaic. In typical fashion, 311 delivered on a hard-hitting set of fan favorites as well as breaking in new favorites like "Too Late," "Too Much To Think," "Til' the City’s on Fire," and "Wildfire." For anyone paying attention to the set list, the band played a lot of new music... and that's a good thing.
Mosaic offers an exciting evolution to 311's well established sound and is one of our favorite albums of the summer. Want more? Check out the band's latest album and tour schedule below.
"Lifelines" tour with I prevail, Islander, Wage war, and assuming we survive in boston at Brighton music hall
by Michael Connelly
Islander crashed like a gnarly wave into Brighton music Hall on 2/13/16. Alongside them performed Assuming We Survive, Wage War, and the much-loved headliner, I Prevail. The sold-out venue was the backdrop for the second show of the Lifelines tour. The same, inclusive theme from all bands was carried out and that no matter who we are or what we go through you are still human at the end of the day.
Assuming We Survive kicked the show off with some hard hitting skate park head bangers, bringing in a simultaneous wave of nostalgia and unique face-kicking rock. The lead guitarist also proclaimed his love, one that we all secretly share, for Denny's Restaurant on this cold and romantic Valentine’s eve. Assuming We Survive played their hearts out for their hit song "Down", and the crowd reacted accordingly as the amplifiers echoed through the rafters, leaving well-earned pools of sweat on the stage.
Next on to stage came Islander. Islander has a very unique sound, echoing Red Hot Chili Peppers while at the same time sounding like Beastie Boys with a mix of good ol’ Marley. Islander is like a tropical cocktail at a biker bar that usually only serves beer and shots. The group’s hardcore intensity stayed consistent throughout each song, echoing subtle messages encouraging social change. Mikey killed it on the vocals, as was to be expected. His voice on “Devil Red” was spectacular, reaching tones I previously thought impossible. We were lucky enough to talk with him behind the scenes - as you can see in our Exclusive Interview! The crowd's chants of "You can't change me" rang throughout Brighton Music Hall from the song "Darkness." My personal favorite song by the band started with Mikey saying “This is what electricity sounds like,” before launching into a song to raise the hair on your neck. From the ephemeral tones of space to sitting Island side and hands waving back and forth, Islander certainly is a journey not to be missed.
Wage war controlled the crowd and played some songs from the album, "Blueprints." Cody Quithsaid's clean vocals combined with Briton bond's dirty vocals synchronized amazingly, leading to lifting harmonies and palpable power in every vocal line. Listening to Briton sing, I couldn’t help but feel empowered as he captivated his audience with the sound of his voice and ordered for the creation of a legendary mosh-pit. Wage War's set brought the battle to the masses, and showcased standout songs such as "21" and "Witness."
Then, the moment we’ve all been waiting for: I Prevail came out to play in an amazing display of strobe lights and guitar riffs as their set began. I found myself humming the melody of “stuck in your head” as the crowd jumped to the beat. The impassioned audience could be heard for blocks, singing “Stuck in Your Head.” The audience was electric and I Prevail fed off of the adrenaline.It was epic, to say the least. Brian Burkeheirs’ clean vocals were stellar throughout the entire set. I Prevail’s performance of “Chaos” was mind-bending to witness in person. The band played this flagship song with such raw emotion, belting “Home is where you make it!” as every single living body in the building shouted along. I Prevail not only crushed their original content but, also played a few little covers before the night ended. Avril Lavgine’s Complicated made it on the set as well as Puddle of Mudd’s “She Hates Me”. To everyone’s surprise, and enjoyment, the beloved metal rock stars topped off their nightly covers with Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space.” To some, lyrics are just that - blank slates for you to bop along to on the train. Yet, after this experience of a show, my more pertinent takeaway is to rock hard unapologetic-ally, and most importantly, “home is where you make it!”
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