Last November, a million teenage wishes were granted when the ‘scene’ frontrunners Pierce the Veil and Sleeping With Sirens announced a co-headlining world tour, a tour so hotly anticipated that its European leg was completely sold out well ahead of its opening night. With a spate of special guests, including the likes of Mallory Knox, PVRIS and Issues, in tow, it looks set to be one of the hottest tours this year. On Saturday 21 March, the aptly titled World Tour stopped at the Melkweg in Amsterdam together with the Tyler Carter-fronted Issues.
Issues took to the stage in front of a disappointingly small crowd, something largely down to the shambolic door situation which saw entry take far longer than normal. The band, co-fronted by clean vocalist Tyler Carter and screamer Michael Bohn, didn’t seem too fazed by the lack of audience, although fatigue on Carter’s behalf was noticeable. Their thirty minute set featured standout track Mad at Myself, a song which seamlessly transforms from an RnB, rhythm-laden track into a brutal metalcore outing. Carter and Bohn both engaged well with the crowd, often encouraging plenty of crowd interaction whilst rejecting various fan requests for their cover of Justin Bieber’s Boyfriend, which appeared on the compilation series Punk Goes Pop. Issues are currently in the early stages of recording their second album, something which they told All Things Loud more about earlier in the day. In the meantime, though, they’ll be busy keeping up with a busy touring schedule which will eventually see them become a force to be reckoned with.
Following a last-minute scheduling swap, Sleeping With Sirens fromtman Kellin Quinn took to the stage to sing set opener Kick Me in acapella style, the whole crowd latching on to his every word. “You don’t know shit about me” he sang as his bandmates enthusiastically ran onsgate amidst an array of c02 smoke and lasers. From the off, Sleeping With Sires showed that they mean business as bassist Justin Hills didn’t stop running and jumping around stage for even a second. Matty Mullins collaboration Congratulations (sans Mullins) followed, its intro seeing the whole crowd bounce in time with its chugging guitar riffs (courtesy of Jack Fowler and Nick Martin) and Gabe Barham’s technically impressive drumming. Here We Go followed immediately as an upbeat riff and Quinn’s to-the-point urgency combined for an early set highlight. Some brief audience interaction proceeded to make way for Low, lifted from 2013’s Feel (just like the two preceding tracks). “’cus I tried so hard to convince myself it’s okay to feel this way” sang Quinn in the chorus, before early track A Trophy Father’s Trophy Son preceded a two-song acoustic interlude.
Accompanied by Nick Martin and an extra live guitarist, Quinn led the crowd through Scene Two: Roger Rabbit, a song which made for 1,500 arms in the air. A cover of the Goo Goo Dolls’ Iris saw the whole room sing along in unity, before the whole band rejoined for recent single Go Go Go. Its huge chorus received a huge reaction from the crowd as guitarist Fowler and bassist Hills ran around the frontstage platforms, elevating them a step higher above the crowd. The evening subsequently took a step in the heavier direction in set highlight We Like It Loud, lifted from brand new album Madness. “I’m gonna be the one whose gonna make you hurt” claimed Quinn as he and his bandmates ran circles around eachother as the first proper pits erupted in the crowd. Penultimate set track If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn received the biggest crowd reaction as everyone in the room sang along to its hopefully melancholic chorus. Their hour-long set ended with breakthrough track If You Can’t Hang, a song the band traditionally stop halfway through for some extended crowd interaction. It worked, with the whole crowd cooperating as they screamed their lungs out during its final chorus. C02 smoke made its way to the ceiling as the show ended and Fowler, Martin, Hills and Barham took it in turns to drown beer bottles whilst interlocking arms.
Thirty minutes after Quinn and co. left the stage, Pierce the Veil’s looming white curtain collapsed to the floor during intro track May These Noises Startle You in Your Sleep, leading seamlessly into the huge Hell Above. Chugging guitars and almost arpeggiating high notes intertwined with upbeat drums and Fuentes’ haunting voice during the set opener, which was followed up by the equally upbeat Caraphernelia. Bassist Jaime Preciado took the crown for most energetic band member as he juggled backing vocal duties with his side job as a professional gymnast (it seemed that way, at least). “Nobody gives another penny for the selfish” sang the squeaky-clean Fuentes, who is undoubtedly the most non-metal looking metal frontman. Bulls in the Bronx introduced the first circle pit of the evening in an expectedly chaotic mixture of screams and fury, before Disasterology went down the more alternative path with a catchy riff and downbeat verses. “Now let me tell you ’bout the good life” declared Fuentes ahead of a massive chorus as Props & Mayhem slowed the pace with the evening’s first ballad. A new album is expected this summer, yet nothing has been released thus far meaning that their sixty minute set consisted solely of tracks from their second and third studio albums. Hold On Till May kept the pace slow, something which didn’t faze the crowd whatsoever as they sang along to every word effortlessly.
The halfway point in the set saw Fuentes perform one track acoustically by himself, namely I’m Low on Gas and You Need a Jacket. The track was drawn out to include crowd interaction, eventually making way for the return of bassist Preciado, guitarist Tony Perry and drummer Mike Fuentes. A Match Into Water saw the pit erupt in beautifully chaotic fashion, its distorted riff and uptempo verses combining to produce a fierce chorus. This was followed by a brief speed drumming session and Vic’s claim that one fan had to be taken from the crowd for the next song. A Dutch girl called Marie was eventually dragged up onstage (sobbing uncontrollably) as Fuentes sang the first verse of Bulletproof Love to her, adding a nice touch to the show. Security quickly escorted her off stage as the final chords of Bulletproof Love echoed through the speakers, a song which is by far one of their best. The show finished with the reintroduction of Kellin Quinn, making his standard guest appearance on King For a Day, the track which sent Pierce the Veil’s popularity skyrocketing. “I’m oversleeping like a dog on the floor” sang Fuentes as he and Quinn interchanged vocal duties in and amongst spiralling riffs and a big chorus. As everyone left the stage, fans were left screaming for more whilst the house lights turned back on.
As expected, the show absolutely bred chaos both on and off the stage. Pierce the Veil and Sleeping With Sirens both absolutely proved their worth as more than just musicians, as tomight was the stepping stone from artist to entertainer. By the time both bands return, with or without eachother, expect even bigger venues than before, because the future is only just beginning.
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