LIVE PHOTOS: Halestorm, In This Moment, New Years Day
Review by Greg Maki
Spurred on by the #MeToo movement, women are making major noise in every aspect of our society in 2018, including in the world of rock music. There’s no better representation of that than the Halestorm/In This Moment co-headlining tour that’s been playing arenas across the country. Also featuring New Years Day, this run of all female-fronted bands is on its second leg this summer, and a third has been set for the fall.
Though the 6,000-seat capacity UMBC Event Center was maybe just a little more than half full, those in attendance were treated to a diverse bill, despite the common thread connecting the three acts.
New Years Day, fronted by Ash Costello, brought a goth image to the stage, accompanying a fairly standard hard rock, electronic-accented sound. A cover of Pantera’s “Fucking Hostile” and current single “Disgust Me,” both from his year’s “Diary of a Creep” EP, highlighted the 30-minute set.
NEW YEARS DAY SET LIST: “Kill or Be Killed,” “Fucking Hostile,” “I’m About to Break You,” “Disgust Me,” “Epidemic,” “Defame Me”
The theatrics of the night all belonged to In This Moment. With the stage lighting alternating between near total darkness and blindingly bright, and constantly billowing fog obscuring almost everything, frontwoman Maria Brink and her two backup dancers went through a series of costume changes and props to go along with vritually every song. The band’s first three albums are nothing but a memory now, as the entirety of the set came from “Blood” (2012) forward.
I’ve seen In This Moment live many times going back to the first album (“Beautiful Tragedy,” 2007), and I want to be a fan of its current incarnation, because no other band is really doing anything comparable—not at this level, at least. Though I would have liked to hear some older material, there were no bad songs in the set, other than a languorous, momentum-killing cover of Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight.” But the theatrics overwhelmed everything else, including the songs and the other band members. I like spontaneity and a little more energy in a rock show.
The crowd ate it all up, however, and I’m sure many would have gone home happy if In This Moment had closed the show.
IN THIS MOMENT SET LIST: “Blood,” “River of Fire,” “Adrenalize,” “Roots,” “Monster Jam,” “Black Wedding” (with Ash Costello of New Years Day), “Big Bad Wolf,” “In the Air Tonight,” “Siok Like Me,” “Oh Lord,” “Whore”
With a strong new album, “Vicious” (read Live Metal’s review), released just four days earlier, Halestorm came out of the gate swinging, opening with the new track “Skulls” before going back to its best album, 2012’s “The Strange Case of …,” for old favorites “Love Bites (So Do I)” and “Mz. Hyde.”
After its 2015 release, “Into the Wilde Life,” strayed into pop and even country territory, it’s clear the band is back to emphasizing its hard rock side, with the set list drawing heavily from the new record and “The Strange Case of …” The new material went over exceptionally well, especially “Black Vultures” and lead single “Uncomfortable.”
Hailing from Pennsylvania, Halestorm always seems to put a little something extra into its performances in Maryland—the band’s second home, as frontwoman Lzzy Hale described it. From start to finish, this was a solid rock show by a band that’s firmly back on the right path—no costumes or choreographed dancing needed.
HALESTORM SET LIST: “Skulls,” “Love Bites (So Do I),” “Mz. Hyde,” “I Miss the Misery,” “Killing Ourselves to Live,” “Do Not Disturb,” “Amen,” “The Silence,” “Black Vultures,” Drum solo, “Freak Like Me,” “I am the Fire,” “Uncomfortable,” (encore) “It’s Not You,” “Here’s to Us”