Old rona may be hanging around like a party guest who’s overstayed their welcome, but …
ALL TIME LOW + Neck Deep, Sleeping With Sirens & ONE OK ROCK – 9 October 2015 at CFE Arena, Orlando, FL
When All Time Low announced a US tour with Sleeping with Sirens, I almost lost the proverbial “it.”
I bought a ticket almost immediately and started counting down the days until I would leave another venue without a voice or the ability to hear. On Friday, October 9, the Back to the Future Hearts Tour kicked off in Orlando, FL.
The first band to perform was ONE OK ROCK. Although new to American ears, they managed to wake up the waiting crowd. They even had Sleeping with Sirens’ Kellin Quinn come out for song.
Neck Deep took the stage next and joked their way through a shit ton of technical difficulties (i.e. not being able to hear Ben Barlow’s voice for the entirety of the first song as well as an awkward five minutes of guitar issues). The band played almost half of their new album Life’s Not Out To Get You in the short time they were on stage, including Serpents, which was even better live than expected. Towards the end of Kali Ma, Jeremy McKinnon (A Day to Remember and co-producer of LNOTGY) surprised the crowd with his part of the song.
Sleeping with Sirens’ set was wildly different than the two other bands (which left me wondering why they were on the tour to begin with). The light show was unbelievable, your body vibrated from the heavy bass and drum beats, and if possible, Quinn’s voice sounded even more high-pitched live – true talent! The band used Madness as the basis for their set, playing loved ones like Kick Me, but they also pulled out a few oldies (Rodger Rabbit, an audience favourite).
Finally, All Time Low appeared. I have seen ATL three times before this concert, and each time, the venue gets better. But filling the space and time and engaging the crowd is what All Time Low does best (or really just lead singer Alex Gaskarth and guitarist Jack Barakat, as drummer Rian Dawson and bassist Zack Merrick are mute during the banter).
As promised, ATL played more songs from their recent album Future Hearts, which meant that Gaskarth was able to serenade the crowd with an acoustic rendition of Missing You. ATL is one of the only bands I’ve ever seen live that uses their arsenal of old EPs and albums to create a stellar setlist; the band played Poppin’ Champagne off their first album for the first time in five years (according to Barakat).
Major props must be given to Dawson for crushing the drums throughout the entire set, especially during Missing You. To end the night, ATL brought out giant inflatable balls, fired off sort of working confetti guns, and performed Dear Maria, Count Me In, and so the Back to the Future Hearts Tour began.
ALL TIME LOW PHOTO GALLERY by ALEX SHIMALLA
Catch Neck Deep on tour with State Champs in Australia!
Edit 14 October: Post updated to reflect new correspondence.