May 13, 2014 Framing Hanley, Devour The Day, Starset, & Three Years Hollow Rock NYC 5-5-14
It is not often you see a bill with four emerging and very promising hard rock acts now-a-day. However, on Monday May 5th, 2014 at the Studio at Webster Hall in Manhattan, New Yorkers gathered around to witness a show that boasted the bands Three Years Hollow, Starset, Devour the Day, and Framing Hanley. Being that three quarters of the line-up were relatively new bands, and the headliners had been laying low for the last few years, one may have guessed the show would have been underwhelming in attendance. Fortunately, this was not the case at Webster Hall. As fans began to accumulate, Three Years Hollow took the stage promptly at seven to start off the night.
Based out of the Mid-West, Three Years Hollow have been making waves in the past few years touring with the likes of Eye Empire, Saving Abel, Saliva, and Sevendust among others. Having recently inked a deal with Imagen records, which released their debut album The Cracks, the band is back on the road to spread the word. Opening with the heavy-hitting “End of Demise” off of their independent release Ascension, the band wasted no time in letting the crowd know what they were about. Despite the limited stage room, the band ripped through an energetic set including their single “Hungry” as well as finishing with the track “For Life”, which features Clint Lowery of Sevendust on the record. Three Years Hollow kicked the night off with a bang and made many new fans well after their set at their merchandise booth and the bar.
Up next were newcomers Starset from Ohio. Upon wrapping up their first national tour this past winter with Gemini Syndrome and Mindset Evolution, the band has also recently inked a deal with a major label, Razor and Tie Records. The members of Starset all follow a very detailed sci-fi theme in their lyrics, image, and Starset Society message. All members, aside from the vocalist, sport black astronaut suits with homemade space helmets fit with blue LED lights. Lead vocalist Dustin Bates (formerly of Downplay) works the keyboards and an oversized IPAD screen for effects and visuals in formal attire with a bowtie. Keeping up with their mysterious image and unique theme, the band blasted through an emotional set featuring “Carnivore” and closing with their fast-rising single “My Demons”. The band was very affable and social off-stage, and spent the rest of the night in the crowd supporting their fellow touring bands as well as making new friends.
Devour the Day may be a new band in theory, but their two founders Joey “Chicago” Walser (bass and supporting vocals) and Blake Allison (guitar and lead vocals) are no strangers to the game. Fervently rising from the ashes of their former band Egypt Central in 2012, the Memphis, Tennessee natives are making giant leaps and bounds with their debut album Time and Pressure released in 2013. With hard rocking staples on constant rotation like “Good Man” and “Respect”, the band had more than a few fans amassing before long. Devour the Day decimated the tiny stage with Walser working up a sweat by the end of the opening track from both his savage head-banging and nonstop motion. The band was cordial and Allison offered enough humor and banter to keep the crowd interested. After four heavy songs, the band slowed things down with “Move On” before moving into a cover of “White Rabbit” by their former band. Closing with the thundering “Good Man”, the band managed to work everyone up and pull in the last few stragglers for Framing Hanley.
To say Framing Hanley has been through a lot the past three years would be an understatement. After touring in support of their sophomore release, A Promise to Burn (2010), with the likes of Sick Puppies, 3 Pill Morning, and Adelita’s Way, the band seemed to disappear for reasons unknown. Nixon recently informed fans that the band had parted ways with their former label, as well as longtime bassist Luke McDuffee. Now on Imagen Records (previously Silent Majority), the band has raised enough dough via a “Kickstarter Campaign” to complete their third release appropriately titled The Sum of Who We Are which was released a few weeks ago.
As soon as the house lights went out the crowd went into a complete frenzy for a band they had so longingly missed. The ladies’ screams for Nixon and his southern brothers could be heard for blocks away down the streets of New York City. Opening with their new single “Criminal”, the band wasted no time in getting the crowd to chant along with the chorus. The band played all of their fan favorites including “You Stupid Girl”, “Hear Me Now”, “Back to Go Again” and of course their cover of Lil Wayne’s infamous “Lollipop”. The guys looked and sounded refreshed and eager to get back to it. Nixon offered his southern charm and gratitude to the crowd for their continued support in the bands absence, which the crowd of course ate up. It will be interesting to see where the band goes from here, with more tours to round out the summer.
This was one of the best had rock shows this spring, maybe the year for that matter, and should not be missed. There is definitely something for everyone, and all bands are worth seeing now before they really pop off and you wish you had seen them in more intimate venues. Moreover, you would have never of known there was a backstage at this venue, because all members of every band made themselves visible consistently throughout the night. The bands were not only supporting one another in the crowd, but actively seeking people to share their art with. There were no “rockstar” attitudes in attendance, only musicians looking to make fans and friends for life. For the low dough price of the tickets for this show, it is a crime not to attend when it comes nearby. Make sure to check this bill out at a music venue near you.Review written by Mr. G.