The Glamour Kills Tour 2013 is well underway, and those who are going to one of the shows can plan on having a good time. This year’s lineup provides the perfect mix of pop-punk and rock and is sure to satisfy the pickiest of listeners.
I was fortunate enough to go to the opening night of the tour in Jacksonville, Florida on October 11th. I ran into some of the members of Stages & Stereos before the show, and talking to them, I could sense a bit of nervousness. Honestly, I was a bit shocked because I had seen these guys perform what feels like a million times prior to this tour, and I had never felt this vibe before. But they were the first band to go on, and the nerves seemed to melt away as soon as they walked onstage.
Having released their newest EP, Small Town Favorites, a few weeks before the tour, it would be the first time most people would be hearing these songs live. They opened their set with the powerful and passionate track “1990.” The crowd’s reaction to these five guys was nothing short of awesome. During S&S’s set, the announcement was made that the first night of the tour had sold out, and that made me think back to a conversation I had with Daniel Lancaster, lead vocalist for Stages, a few months earlier at small bar venue in Gainesville. He walked over to me a few minutes before they were set to go on, and after we talked for a little bit, he said, “One day, we are going to sell out this place.” While watching their set, the only thing I could think was, ‘Well, this isn’t 1982 [the venue in Gainesville], but you sold this place out.’ I could not have been prouder of the opening performance of the tour and seeing all of Stages and Stereos’ hard work finally pay off.
Before that night, I had only seen Cartel one other time. They aren’t a band that I religiously listen to, but I have a few of their songs on my iPod, and I remembered how great of a performance they put on the last time I saw them. They truly didn’t disappoint this time around either. What I love most about Cartel is that they have been in the game for such a long time that I can’t help but imagine how many bands, including the bands on this tour, wouldn’t be around if it wasn’t for Cartel. Over the years, they have also stayed extremely relevant and have created music that is not only audibly pleasing, but also lyrically stunning. Their performance was flawless, and over the span of my concert-going experiences I have seen many lead singers, but few can compare to the talented Will Pugh.
Man Overboard is the only band on this tour’s lineup that I had no connection with prior to that night. I had listened to a bit of what they had to offer, but not enough to recognize any of it while watching them. However that didn’t stop me from immensely enjoying the show they put on. During their set was when the crowd-surfers began popping up all over the venue. These New Jersey rockers definitely left an impression on me. I never would have expected tall and lanky vocalist, Zac Eisenstein, to be such an amazing screamer, but just goes to show that you can’t judge a book by its cover.
You could tell the moment you walked into the venue that a majority of the crowd was there to see Mayday Parade, and I didn’t blame them one bit. In all the years that I have been seeing them, I have never been disappointed at an MP show. They had just released their fourth studio album, Monsters In The Closet, three days before the opening night of the tour, but I knew that detail wouldn’t deter superfans from knowing every single lyric to the new songs. One thing that sticks out in my mind that made this performance really special was the smile on Derek Sanders’ face. Any time he would stop singing and just look out at the crowd, he had a smile that could warm even the Grinch’s heart. I don’t know what was going through his mind, but his face resonated pure happiness, and there’s no greater experience than watching an artist take in the moment like that.
My personal favorite moment from the evening came early in Mayday’s set. They began “Jamie All Over,” and of course the crowd went wild and sang every word. Now, what happened toward the end of song shouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone who is familiar with the guest vocals on that track, but I was still caught off guard a little bit when Daniel Lancaster ran onstage to sing the last part of the song. For those of you who don’t know, Daniel is a guest vocalist on the A Lesson In Romantics version of that song. The moment was perfect and the connection that these two bands have was made very evident. The setlist was any Mayday fans’ dream. They did a ton of their classics, including “Miserable At Best,” which, like always, resulted in a crowd sing-a-long. The new tracks seemed to be going over very well with the fans, too. Whenever the band would begin one of the newest songs, the crowd would go crazy. They ended their performance with ‘The Last Something That Meant Anything,” a track off their first EP, Tales Told By Dead Friends.
The Glamour Kills Tour runs through the end of November. You can buy concert tickets here, and you can purchase a CD at each band’s website. Also, you can check out a fan photo recap of the first night of the tour here.
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