Written By: Michael and Terri Gonzales
The Black Veil Brides “Black Mass Tour” descended upon Chicago’s historic Riviera Theatre this past Saturday, October 25, 2014 for a evening full of melodies and mayhem. This was the fourth stop of the freshly embarked upon tour with Drama Club, Set It Off, and Falling In Reverse along for the wild ride as touring support for the headliners Black Veil Brides. When Falling In Reverse front man Ronnie Radke is touring with Black Veil Brides lead singer Andy Biersack fans are guaranteed more than their money’s worth at each and every stop of the tour. The stellar lineup had the venue jam packed with patrons of all ages. Plenty of them young and old were fully decked out in Black Veil Brides styled attire reminiscent of late 80’s Motley Crue. It was indeed a diverse bunch filling the venue to the brim all in eager anticipation of the performances that were ahead.
The masked duo Drama Club kicked things off with their wild electronic set giving patrons a diverse musical and visual array to start the night’s festivities. Drama Club’s eccentric performance may have caught much of crowd by surprise that may have never heard of them, but the majority of those patrons were most likely fans by the end of their set. The intense light show and sonic beats were hard not to enjoy. Following up Drama Club‘s rave like set was Set It Off who brought their unique orchestral pop punk sound to the stage. It did not take long before Set It Off had the crowd bouncing in unison as the band jammed away. Set It Off are currently promoting their latest album “Duality” that was just released last week on Equal Vision Records. Set It Off’s upbeat anthems kept the crowd going from start to finish. This was another diverse choice to be added to the tour lineup that kept the crowd active throughout their set.
Next to take the stage was the notorious band Falling In Reverse. Fans were treated to a back drop with a cartoon stylized thug character seemingly inspired by front man Ronnie Radke holding up two middle fingers that were covering the band’s amps on the stage giving a unique dimensional effect to the humorous character. Behind each middle finger was a basketball hoop as well that came into play midway through the set. Each member of Falling In Reverse was wearing their own signature basketball jersey, shorts, and pants with their last name on the back of the jersey and band logo on each piece of attire. Falling In Reverse have a great dynamic about them that carries over through their live performance with each member in unison, including the currently unknown bass player that has taken the place of Max Green.
Halfway through Falling In Reverse’s set Radke pulled out some inflatable basketballs giving a few lucky fans the opportunity to try and make a basket from the crowd. Everyone that attempted was nowhere near making it in, but Radke still gave them each a shirt for their effort. Falling In Reverse performed a solid mix of songs off of both of their albums ranging from hip hop anthems to mosh pit frenzies. They wrapped up their performance with the Escape The Fate classic “Situations” followed by “The Drug In Me Is You” leaving their fans screaming in a frenzy for more as they exited the stage. Whether you love them or hate them, Falling In Reverse always put on a great performance that is truly their own.
Once Falling In Reverse had wrapped up their set the excitement levels began to steadily rise as classic bands such as The Misfits, Slayer, and Motley Crue were being played during the sound check for none other than Black Veil Brides. Once the lights went dark drummer Christian “CC” Coma was the first one on stage and the venue went wild as he stood atop his drum throne acknowledging the crowd. Amidst the initial frenzy the rest of the band came onto the stage. Once lead vocalist Andy Biersack was front and center he immediately commandeered the crowd as they went into complete chaos at the sheer sight of Black Veil Brides now gracing the stage. The band wasted little time before breaking into “Heart Of Fire” a new track off their brand new album “IV” that fans went crazy over.
Black Veil Brides have a stage presence that cannot be replicated. They have toned down their look a tad bit these days, but their live performances are still as amped up as ever. Guitarists Jinxx and Jake Pitts shredded away through tracks new and old while headbanging ferociously about the entire stage. Drummer Christian Coma delivered some pounding beats with a thunderous drum solo a little more than halfway through the show that rivals some of the best. Bassist and backup vocalist Ashley Purdy wowed the crowd with a spontaneous supply of interaction. One moment he was leaning over the barricade to record a Snapchat video on a fans cell phone, and moments later he was rolling on the floor singing his heart out while never missing a beat the entire time. Front man Andy Biersack was a nonstop madman on the stage traveling across every inch of space while constantly leaning out and sometimes standing atop the barricade edge being supported by the crowd to interact with the fans. Despite injuries sustained in the past from onstage wildness, Biersack was still happily inclined to climb atop the massive speaker wall and drum throne area to perform and thrash about as well.
Black Veil Brides put on an amazing set wherever they are performing at by bringing a raw energy that is nonstop from start to finish. Their set consisted of hits old and new while adding some of the brand new tracks off their then upcoming album “IV” on Lava/Universal Republic Records that was released worldwide two days after this performance. The crowd loved every moment of the band’s set as it encompassed all four Black Veil Brides albums rather well. The venue erupted into cries for an encore as the band wrapped up their 2011 hit “Fallen Angels” and then exited the stage seemingly ending a rigorous performance. After a few tense moments, that felt like an eternity for many of the concert goers, Black Veil Brides were back on stage for a final encore. First was the Billy Idol cover “Rebel Yell” that was then followed up with one of the Black Veil Brides biggest hits to date, “In The End” that had the venue singing along in unison word for word from start to finish giving the fans what has come to be Black Veil Brides finest tour yet.
The “Black Mass Tour” was a night full of unique, diverse, and fantastic music and performances on all levels. Drama Club, Set It Off, Falling In Reverse, and Black Veil Brides all put on incredible sets with each being completely unique in their own regard. The energy and momentum from all of the bands was nonstop and contagious as the crowd got more and more amped up with each performance. Every concert goer seemingly left that venue stoked and more than satisfied with the wild night of music that they had just partaken in. Black Veil Brides always put on one of hell of a live performance, and when they are the tour headliners you know that the band will be going all out to ensure everything is incredible for their fans. The “Black Mass Tour” is without a doubt the tour to see this fall/winter with nationwide concert dates scheduled through December 15. Be sure to catch Black Veil Brides, Falling In Reverse, Set It Off, and Drama Club on the “Black Mass Tour” at a venue near you as it will not disappoint. Also check out Black Veil Brides brand new album “IV” that is available now as it certainly is a powerhouse of heavy hitting rock and roll fury Black Veil Brides style that shows these guys are only getting better and better through each and every album.
Be sure to check out our photo galleries from the show: