It’s a freezing cold Tuesday night and the rain is pouring down outside. There is a huge line outside the Manchester Students Union populated with dangerously underdressed teenage girls, all huddled together to shelter themselves from the cruel October wind. But none of them care about the impending frostbite, all they want is to secure a place at the front, so they can be as close as they can to their favourite band, blessthefall. Oh to be young again. I, on the other hand, was at the bar, with my feet up, Spongebob on the TV and a nice relaxing pint in my hand.
Anyway, I digress. Somewhat darker in person than they are on record, Motionless In White (***) emerge out of the shadows. Looking like a terrifying version of KISS with their uber-gothic look, they certainly win over the crowd appearance wise. Though the vocals are a tad weak, vocalist Chris Motionless has some impressive live screams, but that doesn’t really matter when the crowd are screaming out the words to the likes of ‘Puppets (The First Snow)’ and ‘Abigail’. These guys really get the crowd going though, which isn’t always easy for an opening act, so kudos to them.
Up next are those lovable scamps Pierce The Veil (**). With a decent portion of the crowd already gone, they have their work cut out for them. With a distinct lack of straighteners, vocalist Vic Fuentes looks like a bit like a springer spaniel, but his charm and charisma shines out, as he warbles his way through the set. But, with the numerous awkward pauses between songs and his painfully cliché speeches about “not letting anyone tell you what to do, etc.”, they start to grate and get old fast. I would like to point out that, kids, you should respect your parents, they are the ones picking you up from this gig and probably the same people who bought you the tickets.
Eagerly awaited headliners blessthefall (****) manage to shake things up a bit though. As the lights go out, they stroll out on stage to the entire crowd chanting their names. Although their set was short, they wasted no time in causing havoc in the tiny venue of Academy 3. Circle pits, stage diving, wall of death and at one point, lead singer Beau Bokan is hanging upside down from the ceiling and still belting out one of their epic anthems. They are truly spectacular live. Although this tour is about promoting their lasts album ‘Awakening’, it’s the older songs like ‘Hey Baby, Here’s That Song You Wanted’ that win over the crowd. These guys put on one hell of a show, shame it was so short lived though.
Written by Andy Roberts