Monster Energy Outbreak Tour

With Asking Alexandria, As I Lay Dying, Memphis May Fire, and I See Stars

Date: November 19, 2012                                                                                   Venue: Vogue Theatre                                                                                                 City: Vancouver, BC                                                                                                             Highlight: Danny Worsnop of Asking Alexandria’s onstage ranting, and generally just listening to him talk and sing in that swoon-worthy accent.
Reviewed By: Desiree Mark

“First of all I want to say how thankful I am that this tour continued even after the devastating loss of Suicide Silence’s frontman Mitch Lucker. Each and every person in attendance knew that Mitch wouldn’t want everyone sitting around with tears in their eyes, but instead he would want to see all of his friends and fans coming together and being a part of what he loved and dedicated his life to, music. And now he can see all the circle pits opening in his honor from the best view in the house. Friend, Husband, Dad, Musician, Life-changer, Rest in Peace Mitch.”

Now on with the show: Monster Energy Outbreak Tour 2012.

There are certain occasions when even I appreciate a good Ronnie Radke hissie-fit, and the case of him kicking I See Stars off The Thug In Me Is You Tour is certainly one of these instances. So thank you Ronnie, due to your latest drama I find myself unexpectedly having the pleasure of seeing I See Stars as part of The Monster Energy Outbreak Tour.

They’re kind of a strange fit with the rest of the bands on the bill, but exciting nonetheless; the ISS boys filled the void on the tour left by the departure of Attila who were unable to cross the border, due to…well you can only imagine. Anyways, the boys of ISS were an energetic opener, and a lovely bit of icing on the line-up for all those who weren’t expecting a replacement.

“Frontmen Devin Oliver and Zach Johnson were incredibly lively and had the whole crowd (well, everyone without a beard that wasn’t here to see As I lay Dying) singing along, jumping around, and…well…partying. Welcome to the end of the world party!”

The show even got a little crunk with the help of a break down by “Zacky J”, I think this and the tightness of Devin’s leather pants had all the old-school metal fans scratching their heads and wondering what they had gotten themselves into.

Next to take the stage was Memphis May Fire, a bit of a more grown up, serious sound than the party rock of ISS. Still having a bit of synthy programming they helped make for a more smooth transition between ISS and As I Lay Dying. Introducing themselves with the chanting, “This is who we are, these are the roads we’ve paved” from Without Walls, off their latest release Challenger. Memphis May Fire seems to be playing up their southern sound a bit more these days, which is always good in my books. At times the vocals sounded a little pitchy, but there was something to love about the more raw and unpolished sound that our auto-tuned generation is slowly forgetting – metalcore/post-hardcore shouldn’t always sound so pretty.  I’m still wishing they had played Losing Sight, as Danny Worsnop was right there, but I guess that would ruin the allure of Asking Alexandria’s grand entrance. Overall a solid set, nice to see lots of the new songs live.

When As I Lay Dying took the stage I realized how long it’s been since I’ve shot a true metal band’s performance. These manly men with beards seemed foreign to me, and all my typical side swiped emo hair swooshes were replaced with thrashing metal head banging. Masterful power stances and raging guitar solos for everyone, this band was on point, destroying track after track.

“Secretly throughout the whole set I was fantasizing about Tim Lambesis bench pressing me…but come on who wasn’t.”

Finally, the lights faded and the stage flooded with smoke, as the members of Asking Alexandria took their rightful places on stage. Then, out of the smoke poured Danny Worsnop, channeling his inner Jack Sparrow, with enough fringe to safely say he’s not from around here. Thank god for rock stars that still look like fucking rock stars.

“Like some sort of sex-rock-indian-chief, Danny wore a fringed leather jacket like nobody’s business. His singing voice aged to perfection, raspy from years of Jack Daniels and god knows what else. He immediately charmed the crowd with his rock-and-roll Prince Charming accent and demanding presence as he jumped into Welcome, which lead straight into Closure.”

Part way through Asking Alexandria’s set Danny took time to honor and dedicate The Outbreak Tour to Mitch Lucker, voicing over Dedication, “He was such an incredible man, and such an incredible performer, and every single moment we’re on this stage, we’re doing it in his fucking name, so for this next song I need you to all sing as loud as you can because this one’s going out to Mitch.” Throughout Someone, Somewhere the crowd stood in memory and honour, even those sitting rose to their feet to show their respect. Overall, there was less of a sadness in the air and more of a feeling of respect and togetherness that permeated the venue.

“You’ll never really find those perfect words.
Something more than just “Goodbye.”

It’s hard to remember the good times when there’s just so much heartache, but they deserve more than that. They deserve more than just one single moment of sadness.

So just remember that when there’s enough love in our hearts, it burns like a fucking supernova, and there sure is enough love in our heart to spark that famous smile.

We all lose someone at some point in our lives,
but don’t ever let go of that smile.

Hold on forever. Because that’s our final dedication.”

At the close of the song, Danny and the band stepped off the stage and gave Mitch his turn at the mic. The stage stood vacant as Mitch’s voice screamed out over the speakers “With every breath you take you’re dying, With every step we take we’re falling apart, If we only had one chance we’d breathe, Let’s take the chance right now and scream, You only live one life, For a very short time, So make every second divine.”

The band came back out with a renewed liveliness and powered through the rest of their set. Overall I was amazed at how well the band has come together over the past year (seeing as last time the band played Vancouver, it was said to be the first time Danny had ever played a show sober), proving what doesn’t kill you definitely makes you stronger.

Their performance has now been fine-tuned to near perfection, making for an amazing live show. Each member of the band added their personal showmanship to the collective making for a well-rounded, energetic performance. Along with playing all the favourites, the Asking Alexandria boys also treated fans to a taste of their upcoming album scheduled to be released early 2013, playing their first single Don’t Pray For Me. Nevermind the sound, the character of this band, and especially frontman Danny, could overwhelm any venue they set foot in. Between songs Danny entertained the crowd with talk of fondue, hot tubs, and all the other rock star necessities.

“Fuck me, I just tried to drink my microphone.”

A night that could have easily not existed at all turned out to be not only a great show, but also an amazing memorial for an amazing man. Congrats Monster Energy and all the bands involved for not only keeping this show alive, but hosting an amazing tour yet again, we look forward to what next year has in store.

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