The one thing you can count on at an Escape the Fate show is to expect the unexpected. Robert Ortiz (drums), Craig Mabbitt (vocals), Kevin “Thrasher” Gruft (guitar), and TJ Bell (bass) introduced the Cleveland audience to Hate Me, the day before the official album release date. What began as a regular post/hardcore metal show quickly evolved to a thundering singalong, with each audience member joining in.
Whether singing or screaming, Mabbitt is powerful with a unique ability to tap into the emotions of each person. On the song, “Ten Miles Wide” Mabbitt pulled a woman from the crowd to scream along with him. But that was not the only shocker, Mabbitt stage dived into the packed house to finish the song from the crowd of people watching.
Song after song drove the audience to stage dive, mosh, and jump at the same time. Gruft was thrilling throughout, but his solo rendition of “Eruption” by Van Halen during one of the encores made the audience demand more. In true Escape the Fate fashion of giving more than expected, the encore was an additional set of music instead of one more song. Even the merch table offered extras, with a special edition Escape the Fate Halloween tee shirt and a chance to buy the new CD before the release date. It was an extraordinary night of great music with one of my favorite bands and will guarentee that if you are not an Escape the Fate fan yet, you will be by the time the show ends.