November 11, 2013 Sleeping With Sirens, Memphis May Fire, Breathe Carolina, & Issues live at Best Buy Theatre, NY 11-2-13 (Exclusive Coverage)
A few months back “The Feel This Tour” was announced featuring Sleeping with Sirens, Memphis May Burn, Breathe Carolina, and Issues. Midway through the tour cycle the group of bands stopped at Best Buy Theatre in NYC for a 2 night performance November 1st and 2nd. The stage was set Saturday November 2nd; Time Square, New York City was a 2nd consecutive sell out for the tour. With a capacity crowd of 2,100; Best Buy Theatre was ready to rock with some of today’s hottest bands in the post-hardcore genre.
First to grace the stage was Atlanta, GA based band Issues. Lead by Tyler Carter (clean vocals) and Michael Bohn (unclean vocals) formerly of Woe, Is Me; Issues is paving a new path for themselves. With their debut EP Black Diamonds (2012) the band is building quite a following while touring around spreading the word. Their sound is an interesting mix of modern hip hop beats, harsh and clean vocal approaches with a pop sense. They opened up with new single “Hooligans” which got the crowd moving right from the get go. A great deal of the attendance knew of the band from their association with Woe, Is Me. Their 7 song set marched on with a list of tracks from the Black Diamonds (2012) EP. Fans bounced up and down from start to finish and were treated to a newer track as well entitled “Stingray Affliction”. Issues was the nice beginning to the evening and fans can look forward to a full length album in 2014.
Up next were Denver, Co band Breathe Carolina. Their unique blend of electronic dance beats, metal guitars, and vocal hybrids has been attracting young audiences since 2006. In that time the band has released 3 successful full length albums, and toured all over including Warped Tour 2012. Things are certainly different for Breathe Carolina since founding member Kyle Even’s recent departure from the band to take on responsibilities as a new father. No word if and when he will be returning to the band. Congratulations to Kyle on his newborn child from Cryptic Rock.
As the band hit the stage Best Buy Theatre was immediately transformed into a club like atmosphere. Starting off with “Hello Fascination”, “Hit and Run”, and a new song “Mistakes” off of their Sol Republic Mixtape. Excitement was riding high in the audience and even resulted in some crowd surfing. In between songs remixes of dance hits such as Steve Aoki’s “Turbulence” played.
Adding to the excitement on stage in the middle of the set Sleeping With Sirens vocalist Kellin Quinn jumped out of a box and danced with David Schmitt (vocalist). Their set was full of energy which kept a positive vibe throughout it’s duration. As the set came to an end the chart topping pop hit “Blackout” closed things out in grand fashion.
Memphis May Fire were the next band to take the stage and they did so with an aggressive assault. The Dallas, Tx band have been together now for almost a decade and have made a name for themselves in the metalcore scene. With each record the band becomes more known and their sound more refined. The 2012 Challenger album is the most successful record to date and perhaps their most complete.
Creating an atmosphere the dark piano and chants of “Without Walls” began the set leading into “Alive in the Lights”. “The Victim” and “The Sinner” kept the pace going with Matty Mullins mixing harsh and clean vocals with ease. In between songs Mullins spoke generously to the crowd and said “Whomever comes through that door we’re all family…whatever you have going on let it out here!”. Identifying with the crowd proved to be successful judging by the accelerated movement and crowd surfing at a high for the evening. Fans reached for Mullins hand eager for contact with the singer.
Already the heaviest band of the evening; things seem to be taken to a new level when “Vices” showed off the bands most dynamic attempts at melody and aggression. Kellen McGregor put on a solid perform on guitar and poured out all emotion on the stage. When the band went into “Miles Away” Mullins dedicated the track to his wife, Brittany. It was only fitting that Kellin Quinn to come back out on stage to sing the song with the band as he did so on the Challenger (2012) record. Their set closed out with two more tracks off Challenger (2012) with “Legacy” and “Prove Me Right”. There was a great atmosphere going; filled with energy and a feeling of belonging to all in attendance.
The final band for the evening would be none other than Sleeping With Sirens. The Orlando, Fl based band have shown to be an exciting mix of emotional vocals and heavy guitar driven rock. Their popularity has grown tremendously since With Ears to See and Eyes to Hear (2010). Their latest album Feel is receiving rave reviews since it’s release in June and has peak positions in various rock charts. With a successful run on Warped Tour 2013, Sleeping With Sirens were clearly ready to take the next step with this tour. Two nights at Best Buy Theatre in NYC is quite an impressive step for the young band. With positivity comes some bumps in the road as well and they are taking things in stride following the recent departure of rhythm guitarist Jesse Lawson just as “The Feel This Tour” began. According to Lawson the departure was not due to any hard feelings with the band and Cryptic Rock wishes him well.
With the blood flowing through fans veins they were ready for Sleeping With Sirens. What a fitting way to open a set then with “Here We Go”. The track lit the room on fire as Kellin Quinn showed off his dynamic leggero tenor vocal style. The lights were bright, the pyrotechnics were hot and this felt like a rock show! The second song into the set was “Congratulations” which featured a guest vocal appearance by Matty Mullins of Memphis May Fire. The sound was epic and the crowd went wild. Their set had plenty of peaks and valleys of emotion between fast paced tracks like “Low”, “The Best I Ever Had”, mixed with more mellow tracks like “Free Now”.
When the acoustic driven track “If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn” broke out a relaxed feeling fell over the crowd. Quinn voice took you on a roller-coaster ride of emotions throughout the set. After taking you on a high with “A Trophy Father’s Trophy Son” you are taken right back down with “With Ears to See, and Eyes to Hear”. This did not trouble the audience much at all as they sang along with each and every song Sleeping With Sirens offered. Adding to the already balanced set was the energy driven song “Do It Now Remember It Later”. The drum work of Gabe Barham really took center stage on this track. The scream back vocals really translated well into a live setting and it was so hot and crazy that it felt like Warped Tour in the middle of July!
The evening came to a close with the enchanting melodic track “Satellites” and pop energetic track “If You Can’t Hang”. Pleased and fulfilled with Sleeping With Sirens the 2nd night at Best Buy Theatre in NYC proved to be as successful as the night prior. The band is taking strides forward and it seems the sky is the limit for these guys.