I had never seen Starland Ballroom so packed before – I’m talking moving through cars in the parking lot like a Nickelodeon Guts obstacle course. Fans came out in droves to check out the sold out show headlined by Halestorm. This particular show had been sold out for months prior, so if you were not on your browser when tickets on sale mashing that F5 key, no cigar. There were some younger fans, but the demographic was mostly comprised of older metal fans. It’s a testament to how Halestorm conducts themselves as their sound at times harkens back to the days of classic metal music.
The first band of the night were The Dead Deeds from East Nashville. They were an all female Misfits-type band that played up the horror aspect of their performance complete with zombie backdrop. It was like watching a band who took some good things out of Alice Cooper‘s playbook on a smaller scale. The older fans didn’t know how to react at points, but the band was interesting to watch just from a theatrical aspect.
The second band of the night was New Medicine from Minneapolis, Minnesota. They played with a good energy as bassist Matt Brady did a lot of acrobatics on the stage. When the band performed “One Too Many” at the end of their set, they got a few kudos from the crowd in the form of toast raises. Not sure if that was indicative of the song, but everybody was having a good time. After their set, they came out to the crowd to sign some CDs for their fans which I think is pretty awesome connectionwise.
When Halestorm hit the stage, that’s when the crowd became lively as some younger girls tried to push their way to the front of the barricade (key word: tried). Lzzy Hale came out solo at first, singing a sample of their new song “She Won’t Mind”. It seemed like it had a country influence to it and that will be interesting to hear as the band readies their third album coming out soon. From the hour and a half long set, it was just a guitar, drums, and vocal clinic. From the first full song “I Miss The Misery”, Ms. Hale wasn’t playing around. Vocally, she sounded on point and strong. Hale’s brother, Arejay Hale played drums with a kid-like energy, which enhanced the performance including a drum solo towards the end of the set. Guitarist Joe Hottinger was into the set as the band tore throw songs like “Freak Like Me” and “Love Bites (So Do I)”.
Listen, I’ve seen Halestorm many times and they always bring that raw, rock attitude to the stage. I haven’t seen them have an off day as they carry themselves like a veteran rock band a la Metallica. I’m ready for their third album tentatively arriving in 2015.
She Won’t Mind
I Miss the Misery
Freak Like Me
You Call Me a Bitch Like It’s a Bad Thing
It’s Not You
Daughters of Darkness
Don’t Know How to Stop
In Your Room
Straight Through the Heart (Dio cover)
I Get Off
Love Bites (So Do I)
I Like It Heavy
Here’s to Us