Alternative Press’s annual Fall Tour made its appearance in Boston on November 19 at House of Blues. This year’s tour broke the pattern of primarily pop-punk bands that the tour generally features. Instead, the lineup featured hardcore and metalcore acts which included This Is Hell, Polar Bear Club, Emarosa, August Burns Red, and Bring Me The Horizon. The entire experience of going to Alternative Press Tour was a worthwhile one. In addition to seeing five upcoming, talented bands, AP also sponsored band signings and free sign-ups for subscriptions, which came with bags that contained posters and other gifts.
This Is Hell and Polar Bear Club both play more “old-school” punk/hardcore music, which features fast paced songs with gruff vocals and quick drum beats. The fans of This Is Hell managed to get pretty rowdy during their set and started circle pits after the band’s coaxing. However, for Polar Bear Club, who managed to put more energy into their set, the crowd was more mellowed out. Regardless of the crowd though, each band played a solid show.
Next on the bill for the night came Emarosa, an experimental six-piece rock band from Kentucky. The band has reached a great level of popularity, especially with their latest release; a self-titled effort. The crowd for Emarosa erupted in excitement the second frontman Jonny Craig took the stage. Even with their popularity, and their great performance on stage, Emarosa only played a six song set before giving the stage up to the final two bands.
August Burns Red took the stage in the midst of a storm of strobe lights which was complimented by a backtracked synthesizer. The intro quickly gave way to one of their most popular songs, “Composure,” which simply made the intro seem ironic. The five-piece Christian metalcore band from Lancaster, Pennsylvania went on to play ten more songs (including a drum solo by Matt Greiner) with an unprecedented level of emotion and a crowd going absolutely wild in front of them. Their set was the rowdiest of the night, with crowd surfers pouring over the barricade and moshing taking place all throughout the pit. If it weren’t for Bring Me The Horizon being the more popular of the two bands (which is potentially due to Oli Sykes’ popularity amongst female fans), August Burns Red would have been a valid choice to headline the tour. Without any doubt, they are a talented band with a lot in store for them.
Even after August Burns Red’s eleven song set, once they gave up the stage to Bring Me The Horizon, the crowd was still ready to go. Playing in support of their most recent release There Is A Hell Believe Me I’ve Seen It, There Is A Heaven Let’s Keep It A Secret, Bring Me The Horizon opened with their first single that was released from the album, “It Never Ends.” Needless to say, as the band took the stage, row after row of the crowd yelled at the top of their lungs. The energy stayed around for the entire set as the band played favorites from their last album, Suicide Season, in addition to an old-time favorite from their first full-length, “Pray For Plagues.” In the middle of the song, frontman Oli Sykes called for the crowd to form a wall of death which stretched from one side of the pit to the other. Soon after, the entire pit was engulfed in the frenzy of the wall of death, and “Pray For Plagues” was completed. At this point in the set, it was fairly easy to tell that Oli’s voice had not continued to go downhill with the band’s constant touring, but had instead made a huge improvement since Bring Me The Horizon’s run on this summer’s Vans Warped Tour. As the remainder of their set wound down, they also announced that the show was the largest United States headlining show that they had ever played. As with August Burns Red, Bring Me The Horizon is another young band with a great deal of success ahead of them.