Date: October 7th, 2013
Venue: Academy, Manchester
Support: The Getaway Plan / Hands Like Houses / The Summer Set
Over the past few months, the heights to which Sleeping With Sirens‘ popularity has soared to is very hard to believe. On their latest UK tour alone, they’ve sold out several dates and, in the case of tonight’s show in Manchester, have even bunked up from The Ritz up to the main Academy. With only recently securing album number three under their belts, if their live show can match the hype, then this is nothing compared to what the future may hold.
Australian openers The Getaway Plan (**) are far more used to shows on a smaller scale, and at first their unfamiliarity is clear. A few songs into their set and the band seem more at ease with themselves and the task of warming the crowd up, with Matthew Wright pacing across the stage whilst delivering some impressive vocal work. It’s just a shame it takes them so long to get to this.
Also from Australia comes Hands Like Houses (***), who are far more energetic and have no problem working the crowd. Frontman Trenton Woodley‘s cleans are near impeccable, but there’s a few sound problems making things sound a little muffled and making everything mesh together in the mix. Still, hits like ‘Introduced Species’ and ‘Antarctica’ see plenty of fans singing along, but the band truly reach their peak with set closer, ‘Lion Skin’.
It’s a bit of a shame then that any momentum built up thus far is almost completely stripped down by main support, The Summer Set (**). Their style of pop-rock a la All Time Low but far more tame (if possible) is very one-dimensional and, ultimately, rather dull. Vocalist Brian Dales sports a red jacket much like Brendon Urie in ‘I Write Sins, Not Tragedies’ whilst dragging his microphone stand around, but screaming fan girls and boys aside, there’s very little to be excited at throughout their time onstage.
Before the headliners take to the stage, vocalist and teen heart-throb Kellin Quinn walks onto the stage for a short minute, says nothing and blows and few kisses. The crowd screams, of course. It seems strange he’d come out just for this. However, eventually, he and the remaining members of Sleeping With Sirens (***) eventually take to the stage together and, once again, are greeted to a flood of screams throughout the entire academy.
Sticking mainly with their latest full-length effort ‘Feel’, in terms of stage presence Sleeping With Sirens have definitely improved since their last headline UK tour run. ‘Congratulations’ and ‘Low’ sees the crowd singing back every word, but the softer reworkings of ‘With Ears To See, And Eyes To Hear’ and ‘If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn’ stand out as some of the strongest moments in their set.
As before, whenever there’s a few moments between songs, the crowd scream to anything frontman Kellin Quinn says or does, despite the fact that, honestly, the mix really muffles up again and it’s hard to really distinguish anything he really says. Closer and biggest hit ‘If You Can’t Hang…’ wraps things up nicely, and the fans singing back half a verse to the crowd truly displays the level of fandom these guys now have.
Written by Zach Redrup