March 3, 2014 For Today bring the ‘Fight the Silence Tour’ to Gramercy Theater, NYC 2-16-14 with Like Moths to Flames, Stray From the Path, The Plot in You and Fit for a King
Sioux City, Iowa metalcore band For Today had a busy 2013 with the release of their EP Prevailer and announcement of their headlining tour for early 2014 in support of their fifth studio album Fight the Silence. The twenty six date tour kicked off at the end of January and will run into March in support of the February 4th release of their new album. Along for the trek is the excellent line-up of Like Moths to Flames, Stray From the Path, The Plot in You, and Fit For A King. The tour came rolling into New York City on Sunday February 16th to play a packed room at Gramercy Theatre.
Starting things off was Fit For A King out of Tyler, TX. The four piece band recently came off a successful run on the ‘About That Life Tour’ with Attila in 2013, following the release of their major label debut Creation/Destruction. Their set started off with high intensity on ” The Resistance”, jumping up and down and throwing their fists in the air, and stimulating the audience to follow suit. That led right into “Warpath”, “Keep Me Alive”, and “Bitter End”. Lead vocalist Ryan Kirby showed strong stage presence moving all over, provoking audience participation from the left to the right and down the center. Delivering a loud and clear message, Fit For A King brought everything they had to the stage and then some.
Following suit next was Findlay, OH band The Plot In You. Having also taken part in the ‘About That Life Tour’ in 2013, the band was ready to take the stage. Formed originally as a side project in 2010 by vocalist Landon Tewers (formerly of Before Their Eyes), bassist Ethan Yoder, and guitarist Josh Childress, the band later added guitarist/vocalist Derrick Sechrist (formerly of Bullet for Pretty Boy), and drummer Kevin Ruthford (formerly of Like Moths to Flames) to the fold. Now stronger than ever the guys released their second full length album in 2013 titled Could You Watch Your Children Burn. They opened their set with ferocity on “The Father’s Seed”, “Troll”, and “Shyann Weeps”. Their exceptional ability to tell a story makes the band intriguing and topical at the same time. Touching on issues most people ignore such as love gone wrong, loss, and abuse, The Plot In You has a point to get across. The audience was completely taken by the band, crowd surfing and looking to fist bump Tewers any chance they could get. Tewers’ performance was off the charts with emotional pouring from his vocal chords and in every expression on his face. The rest of the band matched Tewers’ performance with power raging from their amps and a thick pulse of bass in the floor. The set closed out with “Premeditated”, “Fiction Religion”, and “Miscarriage”. One thing was certain as the band concluded, and that was an impression that lasted the whole night through.
Next up were Long Island, NY natives Stray From the Path. Together now thirteen years, founding guitarist Thomas Williams has seen many changes over that time with the band. Staying the course with Stray From the Path, their line-up began to take shape in 2005 when Andrew Dijorio (AKA Drew York) took over on vocals; bassist Anthony “Dragon Neck” Altamura and drummer Dan Bourke followed years later. Now a cohesive unit, the band released their seventh studio album in late 2013 titled Anyonmous. Looking around the room it was clear the band’s Long Island followers made the trip into Manhattan to support their fellow Islanders. Their set lifted off with “Badge and a Bullet”, “Mad Girl”, and “Negative and Violent”. York belted out raging vocals with conviction while fans went into a frenzy. It was not before long that York decided he wanted to get closer to the audience and leaped over the barricades to sing a few lines in the pit while embracing all in his path. This feeling of comfort only provoked the room to let loose even more and by the time “Death Beds” began the circle pit was immense. This intensity kept up all the way through the set’s closing of “False Flag”. Stay From the Path unquestionably supplied Gramercy Theater an electric performance to the delight of their hometown fans.
Continuing the flow of energy, Like Moths to Flames were pumped up and eager to begin. Formed in 2010 by Chris Roetter (vocals), Zach Huston (bass), and Aaron Evans (guitars), this Colombus, OH metalcore band has come a long way in four years. Solidifying their line-up, the band added lead guitarist Eli Ford formerly of My Ticket Home and drummer Greg Diamond formerly of The Air I Breathe to the mix, making them one of the premier acts in their respected genre. In 2013 they released their second full-length album An Eye For An Eye, took part in a headlining tour, and were featured on the Warped Tour all summer long.
Taking the stage with confidence they ignited a storm with “You’ll Burn”. The entire crowd was jumping up and down and moshing was at its highest level thus far. The set went into “I Solemnly Swear”, “The Worst in Me”, and “The Common Misconception”. Roetter’s bleeding vocal growls grabbed you by the neck while his emotional singing unified each song into cohesive pieces of metalcore bliss. The guitar work of Evans and Ford interjected a darker melodic vibe into the night which kept the audience in a trance. The mosh pit featured some high leg kicks, spin kicks, and fist windmills of the tallest order. A great deal of the audience sang along loudly while moving about the floor, especially during songs like “Learn Your Place” and “GNF”. Roetter and company knew exactly how to keep the crowd engaged and Roetter performs with his heart on his sleeve, extruding passion from the look in his eyes. The set closed out with one of the band’s most melodic and beautiful songs “You Won’t Be Missed”. Like Moths to Flames material is more than just heavy, there is something deeper here, and it is that very aspect which makes them a force to be reckoned with in the coming years.
That point in the evening came when there was only one band left, and they were For Today. With Fight the Silence released two weeks prior, receiving overwhelming positive reviews and peak positions on music charts, playing in NYC only elevated the five-piece band’s excitement. The crowd appeared equally excited for the anticipated set with everyone gathering as close as possible to the stage.
With the vivid blue and purple LED pin lighting and green flashing behind them, For Today opened with new track “Break the Cycle”. Lead vocalist Mattie Montgomery commanded the crowd with his deep strong screams. Songs like “Foundation” and “Pariah” kept the momentum moving with intense breakdowns by new welcomed guitarist Sam Penner. The audience responded with a massive pit of moshing and crowd surfing toward the stage. The spirit felt in the room was unbelievable as the fans threw themselves around yelling to the heavens each and every lyric. Perhaps one of the most awe-inspiring moments was the performance of “Seraphim”. With a chorus that could inspire a revolution of the soul, For Today captured the vibe perfectly. Clearly immersed in their Christian message, the band did not shy away from speaking of Jesus Christ as their lord and savor for making music. Sadly in modern society, many look down upon such open religious affection, but regardless of personal beliefs one has to admire an individual with such conviction in their faith, and that is exactly what For Today projects.
The performance marched on through a mix of older and newer songs such as “Saul of Tarsus (The Messenger)”, “My Confession”, “Fight the Silence”, and “Flesh and Blood”. Lead guitarist Ryan Leitru’s string bending melodies and clean singing added to the atmosphere of a dominating thrashing. At one point in the set Montgomery said to the audience, “We take the stage not because of the fame or the money….we’re here because of the revolution music is making in this generation. I absolutely love the changes that are happening in our scene, we need to make people more aware of these issues to make a better place for our lord and savior”. A large portion of the sold-out crowd rejoiced in Montgomery’s words and yelled good praises with emotions riding high.
The set concluded with fan favorites “Fearless” and “Devastator”. This was a high octane performance of all the bands of the ‘Fight the Silence Tour’; selling out many shows along the way including Gramercy Theater in NYC. For Today continue to triumph and satisfy their dedicated fan base, making possibly their strongest statement to date with Fight the Silence.