As I Lay Dying, with All that Remains, Haste the Day and Through the Eyes of the Dead
Wednesday, November 21
Review and Photos by Caleb Goellner
Touring atop the holiday season is a labor I’ve always admired bands for undertaking. I always picture heavily tattooed rocker dudes and dudettes spending their Turkey Days at a Denny’s, clocking massive cell phone charges to comfort metal mammas and progcore papas hundreds of miles away. Far from the homesickness I expected on the night before Macy’s declares Santa a demigod, Through the Eyes of the Dead, Haste the Day, All That Remains and As I Lay Dying melted a diverse crowd (skinny kids and older, meaner, balder, kids) with well-mixed metal.
Standing in line outside of the Beaumont was, to steal a phrase from foul-mouthed junior high students everywhere, “cold as balls.” After entering the much warmer interior of the venue, this sentiment was humorously mocked by Through The Eyes of The Dead frontman Nate Johnson, who encouraged circle pits to ward off the seasonable chill. The crowd took his advice with abandon through six or so songs of slush (that’s sludge played in a much faster time signature).
After the stage cleared, the very friendly Haste the Day caused the 50 percent of the audience -- namely, those who prefer bands that sing during the breakdowns -- to rush to the front of the stage. Haste brought plenty of noise through their set of sing-alongs. Even though most metal and metalcore acts include a few hooks per album nowadays, it was a nice moment of contrast at this show. The band has what my mom would call “kind eyes,” meaning girls and probably even most of the mean-looking dudes were swooning each time a chorus hit.
All that Remains didn’t have the same sort of peepers, but they did have some of the most technically impressive guitar riffs of the evening. They appreciated the near-capacity crowd, though, and called for as much movement as possible. I was glad to be taking photos from the monitor mixing console on the side of the stage. It would have been hard to eat turkey and all the trimmings the next day through a feeding tube (confession: I never learned how to hardcore dance).
The evening's climax came when the main act stalked out of the green room and into the lights. As I Lay Dying embodies the best aspects of the first three bands on the tour, blended with ice, yogurt and rocket fuel, for a musical smoothie bold enough to heal a viking’s arrow wounds. They've got the heaviness of Eyes of the Dead, the hooks of Haste the Day and the electric proficiency of All that Remains. The security guys were forced to earn their paychecks as riffs erupted. As I Lay Dying played their hits and spent ample time on new material, but just watching their hair fly under the strobe lights was a testament to why kids get AILD’s album artwork needled into their skin.
By the end of the show I don’t think anyone, bands included, had anything on their minds but the tone that Krank amplifier heads deliver. A heavy lineup sans heavy hearts gave everyone something to be thankful for this year: br0000tality.