Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Show Recap: the Audition @ Fox Theatre

i got a chance to catch 2 bands that i've liked for quite a while, the Audition and the Higher. both of these bands don't really fit into the style of music that i enjoy most, but they're fun bands, very poppy/dance /groove style and sometimes you need to enjoy something a little contrasting to lighten things up.

Anyway, this tour was in Colorado Springs a few days earlier and i was really bummed i couldn't make it down there. Luckily my homie Jordan saw that it was coming to Boulder, so i got a chance to see the Audition again (saw them on Warped Tour a few years ago) and a band i've been really trying to see; the Higher.

Both of these bands are signed to labels that don't really represent their sound, Audition to Victory Records and The Higher to Epitaph. Neither band has a big following which was evident as soon as you entered the venue, there were maybe 50 kids in the whole place. By the time The Audition played it had filled up to maybe 100-130, but it was relatively empty compared to other shows.

i wasn't interested in the first 2 bands, including Runner Runner who was in my opinion, way too cheesy and corny. they were energetic but i couldn't stand them, way too much pop for me. i don't even know who the first band was, it was either In:Aviate or Lives of Famous Men or something like that.

Once the Higher came on i was very intrigued as to what they would represent musically. Their sound is like pop-punk, but less punk than usual, with a real groove to the sound. They were very energetic even though the crowd was a little chill. The lead singer looks super-geeky and his whole feel reminds me of white-gangsta, wankster, whatever. He has a good voice, but it's pretty limited, and i concluded after their set that they would be better in a shorter time frame, like 5-6 songs, instead of the 10 or so they played. The switched up between their first full-length On Fire and their recently released full-length It's Only Natural. The main talent in the band appears to be the drummer, who was trying his best to convince us he was Travis Barker with full upper-body tattoo's, and a punk/hardcore style of drummer.

They played a ton of songs, most of them were good but forgettable, their best song by far is Insurance? off of On Fire which they saved for last and were joined by the dudes from Runner Runner. other songs they played were Rock My Body, Histrionics, Movement, 31 Floors, Insurance?, Try Again, Undertaker, Play With Fire, It's Only Natural, and Closer (cover of Usher?).

The headliner was the Audition, a band that i've followed since their first full-length was released on Victory Records, Controversy Loves Company. They've always been a favorite of mine, a lot of fun, and i usually compare them to Fall Out Boy but a little more serious. Last time i saw them they were a 5-piece but this night they were down to 4 band members, which took a little out of the overall sound. According to their wiki page, founding member/bassist Joe Lussa quit the band earlier this year, and has not been replaced.

Lead singer Danny Stevens is definitely a veteran of the game, and the whole band showed their experience through the night. The songs were solid and tight, except for the Jack Daniel's-influenced vocals that seemed to be a little off but nonetheless they were good. Most of the place was dancing and pogo-sticking throughout the set, bobbing their heads to the beat (think a little like the upbeat songs of Maroon 5 with edgey-ness). The bass player was solid, and it was impressive considering he was the rhythm guitarist for the duration of the band until earlier this year, but he was killing it this night.

Near the middle of the set, Danny picked up his acoustic guitar and lead the band in Los Angeles, and slower track off the new album; Self-Titled Album and then into It's Gonna Be Hard which he described as his favorite song they've ever written. It sounded great and it was a good feel before the last few songs. I'm not sure why they chose to play It's Too Late so late in the set as you could tell the crowd didn't really know the song, i'm sure their last two albums are the most popular.

The songs i remember them playing were

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