On my way to The Myth this past weekend, my expectation was that there would be a line already formed to get in to the venue, as I Prevail was arguably one of the biggest drawing bands on Warped Tour over the summer. Driving into the parking lot about a half hour before doors opened, the line to get in was completely wrapped around the venue, with over one hundred people eagerly waiting for their early entry VIP perk. Going from their smaller venue winter headliner, to headlining Warped Tour and nearly selling out venues across the country on a 50+ date tour, it was clear from the start that I Prevail was going to make this fall tour unique.
One of the most interesting aspects of this tour is in regard to the bands opening for I Prevail, as the Detroit based metalcore group is new to the scene in comparison to the three, 10+ year music vets opening for them. Also the fact that I was the only photographer the photo pit for every set, a surreal an unexpected experience for a tour hitting venues the size of The Myth. First up on the Rage on the Stage Tour was Las Vegas rock band Escape the Fate. Supporting their fall 2015 release “Hate Me” the band played a six song setlist, including songs from their four most recent releases. The biggest crowd reaction, including my own, was the moment the first note of “This War is Ours (The Guillotine Part II)” was played; it felt as though this was the moment the crowd was waiting for during Escape the Fate’s set and the live performance did not disappoint.
Second on the bill for the night was Phoenix based rock outfit The Word Alive. Playing a slightly longer set than the previous band, The Word Alive walked out on stage to an eager crowd, giving the impression that this was the start of a more active crowd. Even with their most recent release “Dark Matter” nearing two years old, the band played a well balanced set, highlighting the best of their discography and gaining a more amped and positive response from the crowd.
My personal most anticipated band of the evening was We Came As Romans, as the last time that I was able to see them was in Boston on their run with Parkway Drive last fall. The Detroit metalcore band had one of the most sharp and pristine performances I’ve seen to date, as they completely owned their entire performance. From the very beginning of the set, with each member of the band sauntering onto the stage to start with their hit “Cold Like War” to the very end as the last notes of “Hope” rang into The Myth, We Came As Romans put on a stellar live set, feeding the crowd with endless amounts of energy that was only matched by the never-ending slew of crowd surfers.
Finally, just before I Prevail took the stage, I noticed the energy of the room shift from simple eagerness to ecstatic excitement that was amplified once the lights went our and the black curtain blocking the view of the band’s set up was taken down to reveal a legitimate wrestling ring housing the drum kit. I was definitely not the only one in the room that did not expect to see a lived out stage set up of the wrestling theme of the tour, as I witnessed multiple people in the front row gasp with excitement. The best part about seeing I Prevail for the third time this years was seeing how their live show has evolved over the past six months alone, as I would never have guessed these guys are only four years deep as a band. The once very awkward covers the band threw in to their winter headliner earlier this year came off as more polished and had a significantly better flow this time around. However, for a band with one full length under their belt, these short covers took up 25% of their set, and while some of them seemed to be thrown in the set for fun, I would have preferred to see one or two of them fully formed although the crowd was completely into it. Overall, with a more polished live performance and the hype behind them, I Prevail prove that they will continue to be a highlight in the current scene.