Live Review: Halestorm, In This Moment, New Years Day & Stitched Up Heart - Tsongas Center, Massachusetts 11/05/2018
Last Friday, Lowell, Massachusetts was treated to an evening of hard rock and metal at the Tsongas Center.
First up was Stitched Up Heart, hard rockers from Los Angeles, California. The band consists of Alecia “Mixi” Demner on vocals, Merritt Goodwin on lead guitar, Randy Mathias on bass, James Decker on drums, and Nick Bedrosian on rhythm guitar. They were formed in 2010 and signed to Another Century Records in 2015. They released their first full length album Never Alone on June 17, 2016. As fans were walking into the Tsongas Center, they were greeted to the sound of Stitched Up Heart singing songs from Never Alone including City of Angels, Monster, and Event Horizon. They ended their set with I Can’t Breathe, and Finally Free. During Finally Free, Mixi jumped into the crowd and crowd surfed through the crowd. While some of the fans there didn’t know who they were when they walked in, they were sure to remember them.
The second band of the evening was New Years Day. They were formed in 2005, and hail from Anaheim, California. The band consists of Ash Costello on vocals, Nikki Misery on rhythm guitar, Frankie Sil on bass, Max Georgiev on lead guitar, and Zac Morris on drums. They started on Myspace and released their self-titled EP in 2006, then their first full length My Dear in 2007. Since then, they’ve released three EP’s and two full length albums. New Years Day started their explosive set with Kill or Be Killed off Malevolence. They proceeded to play Fucking Hostile off their new EP, Diary of a Creep released January 26, 2018. The fans were very familiar with New Year’s Day as some if not most have seen them before throughout the years. Costello gave a shout out to Mixi, as well as the other females in the tour and in the crowd. “Woman supporting women” gained a lot of noise from the audience, as it should. There aren’t nearly as many women fronted bands as there are men fronted bands, especially in the metal community. And as few of them as there is, it is very rare to have a whole tour of them. We were very fortunate to have them, and to have them embrace it. New Year’s Day continued their set with Disgust Me, as well as Scream and Defame Me from Malevolence. New Year’s Day has been and will continue to be a must-see band for fans of hard rock and metal alike.
Following New Year’s Day was In This Moment. A metal band from Los Angeles, California, formed by Maria Brink and Chris Howorth in 2005. They started out as Dying Star and changed to In This Moment with. The band consists of Maria Brink on vocals, Chris Howorth on lead guitar, Travis Johnson on bass, Randy Weitzel on rhythm guitar, and Kent Diimel on drums. They are label mates with Stitched Up Heart, and New Year’s Day. They released their first full length in 2007, Beautiful Tragedy, and have released five more since then. Fans were very excited when In This Moment started their set with a mashup of blood and River of Fire. They were the most interesting band of the night. Their set was much more like a play than a traditional set that you would see at a concert. Each song had a slightly different outfit from Maria, and some had different scenes such as Black Wedding and Whore. In This Moment makes you forget that you’re at a concert, and instead you get engrossed in their set.
Lastly, but certainly not least was Halestorm. They’re a heard rock band from Red Lion, Pennsylvania featuring Lzzy Hale on vocals and guitar, brother Arejay Hale on drums, Joe Hottinger on guitar, Josh Smith on bass. Halestorm currently has 3 full length albums, with the fourth album almost done. They unveiled two new songs, Black Vultures, and Uncomfortable. They played a fourteen-song set, which allowed them to play songs off of all the albums to the pleasure of the fans. The show may not have been sold out, but with a venue that holds up to 7,800 that would be a tough feat for most people. The floor was full of people with Halestorm merchandise on from either this show or past ones. Halestorm also played Mayhem, Familiar Taste of Poison, Dear Daughter, I Miss the Misery and Someone Like You and Adele cover. All in all, this tour is a great one for metal and hard rock fans with the added bonus of being able to support women in the music industry. Woman supporting women should be the rule not the exception, and this tour showed us why.
Words and Photography by Meaghan Brown