Kansas City’s Beaumont Club was almost destroyed last week, but it wasn’t by fire, a tornado or wrecking ball, but the heavy-hitting Underoath, Saosin, The Devil Wears Prada and Person L.
Person L took the stage to a less-than-stellar response. The new project from Kenny Vasoli, former lead singer of the influential and extremely under appreciated pop-rock band The Starting Line, evoked blank stares, some boos (but in much more colorful language) and some dancing from the crowd that rightfully enjoyed the fun, funky party music. Vasoli kept the pop-funk set short. It was definitely worthy of an opening spot on the otherwise heavy tour.
After Person L, the crowd — and the stage barrier — came crashing toward the stage. The rows and rows of scene kids plowed their way to the front to get close to popular metalcore band The Devil Wears Prada. While TDWP has a following with the young rock scene, TDWP’s recorded music is a bit on the monotonous side. But its live show is definitely worth a view. It’s nonstop moving, screaming, mosh pits and mayhem. TDWP received almost as stellar an ovation as the two headliners. It was well-deserved for the performance, but not for the originality of the tedious rotation of blast beat and breakdown.
Next up was Saosin. Although the band has a following in every city, its live shows have declined over the past few years as they play the same songs over and over-although the Translating the Name songs don’t get old by any means. This time the Orange County natives had two new songs, “Keep Secrets” and “Love Maker,” and a set list of favorites to please the crowd: “Sleepers,” “Voices” and “You’re Not Alone.” The band was into the performance, with lead singer Cove Reber (who laughed and amused himself and the band throughout the duration of the last song, “Seven Years”) and guitarist Beau Bruchell interacting with the crowd. Although their performance could use a few new tricks, the guitar work of Bruchell and Justin Shekoski remain stellar.
Then came Underoath. The Florida-based metalcore band brought its slew of lights and extremely creepy videos. While creepiness and amazement did ensue, so did intensity.
Over the past few years (and last two albums), Underoath has become increasingly heavier in its music, as well as in its live performances. Starting with a brutally infectious opener, “Breathing in a New Mentality,” the band wove its set between heavy tunes, experimental praise songs and only a couple of old-school favorites. Although guitarist James Smith seemed uninterested in the concert, guitarist Tim McTague made up for it. But it was the frontman who controlled most of the show.
Vocalist Spencer Chamberlain has taken over the role of frontman from drummer/vocalist Aaron Gillespie and it doesn’t look like he will relinquish that role. That’s not a jab, but a compliment to the tall screamer who grabbed the crowd with his low growls and high-pitched screams from start to finish.
Final Thought: Underoath Set List: Breathing in a New Mentality, In Regards To Myself, It’s Dangerous Business Walking Out Your Front Door, The End is Near, You’re Every So Inviting, I Don’t Feel Very Receptive Today, A Boy Brushed Red Living In Black and White, Returning Empty Handed, The Only Survivor Was Miraculously Unharmed, The End is Here, Desperate Times Desperate Measures. Encore: Too Bright to See Too Loud to Hear, Writing On the Walls.