Scream the Prayer Tour w/ The All Stars Tour
Scream the Prayer Tour teamed up with The All Stars Tour sounds like conflict, excitement, lots of music, and a good show. Well that is exactly what it turned out to be. Both stages separated, one inside and one outside. With Scream the Prayer on the inside and All Stars on the outside, the crowds were divided, but for those of us who didn’t take a stand and were constantly going in and out to both of the stages, all I can say is what a show.
The two shows combined created an amazing platform, and better yet had bands competing to hold the crowd. The venue set things up fairly well, and had time slots set so no band was overriding another for to long. If you wanted out of the sun, you can just go inside and watch some bands or look at merchandise. Then the best part was the security, they were watching out for the crowd, didn’t shove or become bossy, crowd surfers were taken care of, and pits spread the entire floor. It is always nice to see security that understands the scene, and how it works. But the best part is they let me stay and take pictures as long as I wanted. The normal 3-song limit didn’t concern them, and I made sure got all I could.
One of the best parts about tours like this in a small area is the merchandise boots. Similar to Warped Tour you can catch the artists at their tent for signings and to talk to them. However on a tour like this, it is smaller which means more face time and getting to know the bands. If you ask the person at the merchandise about the band, chances are they might be part of the band. If they are not they can probably get the band for you. Most of the time after a set the band will go to their tent, and do some self-promotion. Like Warped Tour this is a good way to get to know the smaller bands on a more personal basis before they blow up. Except here, you get a chance to meet Bless The Fall, The Chariot, Sleeping Giants, The Great Commission and the other bands. Not to mention the sponsors of the tour Arkiak Clothing. Never hesitate to get a chance to meet your favorite band, or to find a new one.
So how do you start off a day like this, well with ANGR artist As Hell Retreats. Touring with fellow label mates The Great Commission and Sleeping Giant, it will be a good test to see how they compare and can grow on the road. AHR came out, ready to go, but fell short in the opening. The nerves of the band showed, the guitars sounded clunky. However after a few songs, the band regained their composure with rifting guitars, smashing drums, and growls to get blood pumping. AHR showed the crowd why they are with ANGR and why they are on the tour.
With a start studded tour let alone two tours merged it is hard to become a stand out band, and grab new fans. Well coincidently the sleeper of the day was Sleeping With Sirens. Right from the start the band came out with their hit “If I’m James Dean, Then You’re Audrey Hepburn”. Getting the crowd going early, front man Kellin dove into the crowd to add an extra pop. With all the energy at the start you would expect it to die down by the end of the set. Instead, SWS brought in some more songs, with bigger pops from the crowd, more energy, and kept things alive. SWS took advantage of their early set, and merged crowd. Walking away with what I believe was one of the best sets of the day.
The Great Commission came on to stage, with a little bit of technical difficulties, like label mates As Hell Retreats, and it did end up cutting their set short. However, none of this persuaded, or slowed down TGC. Sending the message that “You will not go to hell for having tattoos or piercings”, TGC made it clear where they stand and where they draw the line. Angela with tattoos, piercings, can shred on the guitar, and can scream and growl, is simply a role model for all the metcalcore females. Justin the front man with his lyrics, screams, and words of passion, honesty, and GOD are building a loyal fan base with the help of the rest of the band through their powerful music. The line was drawn, and TGC made the best out of the worst, and continue to impress.
When I last saw Texas In July, they seemed a little clunky, slow, and nervous about playing live. That was on the Take Action Tour with Silverstein and Bayside. Maybe it was veteran bands on the tour, the experience, or growing up and maturing more as a band in a whole, or maybe all of the above, but it was a night and day comparison for TIJ. They came out, pumped, ready to go, not shy, clean guitars, hard-hitting growls, and a full band presence. With songs like “Magnolia” TIJ got the crowd going and was keeping everyone on their toes.
If you have not seen The Chariot live, then either you are living under a rock, have not heard of them, or for some strange reason do not go to concerts. So let me give you a list of things that can, and probably will happen during their set. Mosh Pits, pushing, screaming, shoving, singing, screeching guitars, growls, hard-hitting drums, and of course shock. Why do I say shock, because that list was the obvious list. The things that make The Chariot, THE CHARIOT well here is the more appealing list. Flying guitars, stage diving, guitarist with no guitar crowd surfing, singers hanging upside down, broken drum sticks flying, bass player on the guard rail, everyone in the band moving around the stage, including the drummer, microphones given to the crowd, confused security, and did I mention one of the best shows you will ever see.
So let me tell the truth about my feelings with The Chariot. I do not own any of their music, and do not listen to their music outside of seeing them live. I have seen them live at least a half a dozen times. They are the one band I do not want the live aspect to be ruin for me. Each set is just pure random and chaos. I love them for it, and they have never disappointed me. But that being said, for the crowd that does listen to their music, you will not be disappointed. Not one person was standing around and, the sound was clean and crisp. With The Chariot it is about honesty, a great show, and giving their fans what they want. The real kicker is, they always deliver, truly love their fans, and honestly love their music and GOD.
Other notable bands that put on great performances were In This Moment, Sovereign Strength, A Ghost Inside, and Alesana. These bands were able to control the crowd, like ITM with their circle pit around singer Maria Brink. Maria was showcasing her dynamic vocals with singing and growls. Sovereign Strength with new album Prophecy, and some hard-hitting chords, they got the crowd jumping, and going crazy. Then of course Alesana had the entire crowd screaming, and singing along with their dramatic singing to screaming set. Each band bringing something new, and trying to out perform the bands before them.
Sleeping Giant is not sleeping. A giant? Yes. Sleeping? No. Not at all. This band is alive, and well. They are wide-awake and fully aware of what is going on. They are here to push Christian Metal to new limits, with their label ANGR and fellow label mates. They did not hesitate to get the crowd buzzing, on stage hardcore dancing, and hand the crowd in their hands with their epic sing-a-longs with Oh Praise Him and Hallelujah.
With all of this action, and all the great bands one band stands out, with an incredible performance. They got the crowd going right out of the gate, big pits, lots of dancing and singing. Oh did I mention climbing to the top of the set? Yeah, to the top of the aluminum trusses, that held the set together. Blessthefall fresh out of the studio wanted to make a statement, and get people buzzing about their new album Awakening. This tour is definitely the way to get the word out. With their hits from their recent album Witness like God Wears Gucci, What’s Left of Me, and To Hell and Back, Blessthefall are piling up an amazing live set, and what could be a great greatest hits collection. The passion expressed and how fluid the band was on stage showed they really are on the right path, and make sure you are there for the Awakening. If the album is anything like the live performance it is going to be amazing. Not only did Beau spend a good amount of the set with the crowd as soon as their set was finished he went to the merchandise tent to spend some time with the fans.
Stage diving, circle pits, sing-a-longs, merging tours, and hours of music made a great show. Not every stop was blessed with the merging of the tours, but if you were able to catch one, hopefully you took in as much as you could.
—Tony D Bryant