If The Plot In You‘s 15 Track album, Happiness in Self Destruction, wasn’t diverse enough for you, here’s another track! Their song “Take Me Away” was not only feelsy to start with (especially with their original music video), but now this raw, acoustic sound takes it even deeper. This was a pleasant surprise in addition to their Happiness in Self Destruction Tour announcement alongside Erra, Sylar and Invent, Animate.
GRAMERCY, NYC – The Road to Bands VS. Food Tour may have been an odd tour title, but named an unforgettable night (April 23rd). Featuring the bands Sworn In, Wilson, Miss May I and We Came as Romans, the line-up was diverse, but oh so satisfying. Starting with Sworn In definitely got the room going wild, especially the crowd killers. Tyler Dennen (Vocalist) fueled the audience as everyone raised their fists and yelled the lyrics with him. When the song “Sunshine” kicked in it got real. Coming down into the crowd, Tyler became surrounded as he continued to scream out the words along with everyone else. It was an epic moment and a great turnout since Sworn In’s previous New York shows were filled with technical issues and illnesses. Luckily their curse was broken and they were able to put on a sick opening to the night.
Among the bands that played New Jersey’s Loud Fest were From The Depths, Too Close To Touch and Emarosa. Flip through the photo gallery below to see some stellar shots of their sets, and to catch vocalist Bradley Walden of Emarosa work his way from floor to ceiling and back again.
Photos by Justin LaMot
Both Cane Hill and The Plot In You dropped new albums in the past few weeks, and both hit the stage on the second day of Loud Fest in Freehold, NJ this past weekend. Photographer Justin LaMot was able to capture some of the magic, from The Plot In You’s “My Old Ways” to Cane Hill’s “Time Bomb.” Check it out!
Photos by Justin LaMot
A show like this can only be described in one word, and that is “phenomenal.” The lineup was diverse, yet also appealing as all the bands fit perfectly together despite their differences in sound and genre. These bands included The Plot In You, Cruel Hand, Secrets, Chelsea Grin and, of course, The Amity Affliction. Ranging from hardcore to metalcore and even deathcore, this show was entertaining throughout every set played.
Unfortunately I missed the opening band, The Plot In You, but talking with some fans and other concert goers I gathered their performance was nothing less than amazing. Although many said that TPIY’s set was way too short and wish they were able to play more, I spoke with Landon Tewers (vocalist) and discussed news of a headlining tour that will be announced soon! So don’t worry, their longer sets will come. Following them was Cruel Hand. I felt as if I was thrown back into 2007 listening to hardcore music while being angsty in high school. I mean that in every positive way. Cruel Hand had an old school hardcore vibe yet one that still fits in today’s scene. Definitely a blast from the past, yet a pleasant one!
Next up was Secrets, who follow a similar pattern and style to other bands in the metalcore genre, but they nailed their performance. The crowd went wild and it was definitely one to remember. With a new album coming out in December (Everything That Got Us Here), they definitely gained many fans and followers with their set. Whether it was the powerful screams or pleasant cleans, the balance seemed just right. But when it comes to deathcore, Alex Koehler of Chelsea Grin knows just the perfect balance between lows and highs. CG destroyed with their set and the pit went berserk. The idly standing viewers in Irving Plaza quickly transformed into an ocean of destruction. It was an incredible sight to not only witness, but to also be part of. They definitely paved the way for The Amity Affliction by getting us all pumped with classic and new Grin songs, even covering Korn’s “Right Now,” which got plenty of love from the fans.
It was the set everyone had been waiting for as the whole venue filled to the brim–in terms of capacity and excitement–as The Amity Affliction took the stage. The crowd constantly sung along while the vocals switched between Joel Birch’s piercing screams and Ahren Stringer’s cleans. It was a perfect set covering old and new songs, yet no matter what was played the crowd remained in harmony with each other and the band throughout. The Amity Affliction showed us why they deserved their position as the headlining band. Overall, the concert was an incredible experience and one to look back on in hopes that the next show attended will be just as amazing, yet will probably be hard to top. But for now, we will dwell on our smartphone videos and pictures reminiscing on how great The Amity Affliction was until they return back to the U.S.
By Justin LaMot
Rise Records new addition, Cane Hill, finally released their self-titled EP after such a long wait. Their single “Sunday School” originally came out just over a year ago, although it’s only been in the past few months that the band released two other singles, “Ox Blood” and “Time Bomb.” Yet despite the time it took for the album to be released, it’s finally in our grasp and is worth checking out.
Only a 7 track album, Cane Hill’s self-titled EP is quite refreshing. It starts off with “Ox Blood”—fast, heavy and chaotic. The riffs and guitars of “Time Bomb” have some real weight behind them, giving the listener the fuel to thrash around and break shit. The vocals have some nice range as well, for Elijah Witt varies between low-toned spoken word sections followed by a mix between mid and low pitched screaming. For most of their songs, this kind of vocal variation gives a nice dark and twisted feel, especially with the lyrical content.
It’s the following songs that demonstrate their “Nü” side. Both “Screwtape” and “Gemini” have an extreme Korn vibe and the influence is easily noticeable. It works well in their favor and it’s not overused as they still maintain their own sound. These two songs also feature clean singing which is surprising since the three singles released showed no signs that actual singing would be involved in the album. Yet the revival of these old school metal vibes is refreshing and haunting. That being said, I wish there was more of it. Only having 7 tracks is disappointing, especially since there are some real quality songs on this album including “French 75.” This song actually features all cleans and Witt even has a similar sound to Chris Motionless of Motionless In White (which could also be compared to Marilyn Manson). “French 75” also has an unspecified guest female vocalist who not only has a beautiful voice, but is the star of the song and makes it worth replaying. The album concludes with two heavier songs, “The Fat of the Land” and “Sunday School,” which are both solid tracks to get the listener pumped. Ironically, when “Sunday School” comes to a conclusion with the lyrics “It never ends,” it actually does end the album.
Although the Cane Hill EP is short in length, it doesn’t take away from the quality of each song. Whether it’s the heavy bangers (“Time Bomb,” “The Fat of the Land”) or even Korn-esque songs (“Screwtape,” “Gemini”), Cane Hill has versatility and a fresh take while dipping into the past for inspiration. The EP is filled with surprises, and while I understand they want each song to have a sense of individuality, additional songs in similar styles of what was already shown could have made this album a more fulfilling and less jarring one. Cane Hill’s self-titled EP is not for everyone, especially since it’s a bit outside of the box, yet those who enjoy Nü-metal or just dark and twisted music will appreciate this new release.
by Justin LaMot
Happiness In Self Destruction is The Plot In You’s most versatile release to date. Vocalist Landon Tewers has written exactly what he wanted to say without anyone telling him otherwise, making for a more personal record. The album has a total of 15 tracks, each with their own personality. Happiness In Self Destruction is The Plot In You both at their softest and at their heaviest. But no matter how soft or heavy, every song belongs and fits within the album. Every song has it’s own purpose and theme, making this album quite the journey.
It’s the vocals that truly make this album. Tewers’s range has greatly improved since their last album, Could You Watch Your Children Burn. Whether its his eerie whispers, trembling screams, deep gutturals or soothing yet at times haunting cleans, he has truly perfected his vocal range. Yet it wouldn’t stand out as much if it weren’t for the instrumentals complimenting his voice along the way. Breaking from the usual metalcore chugs and the excessive need for palm-muting breakdowns, Josh Childress (guitar) and Ethan Yoder (bass) show us that they can still produce a heavy album without having to rely on solely those techniques. Yes, they do use palm-muting and they have their breakdowns here and there, but it’s not overdone and abused like with other bands in the scene. Of course there are points where the riffs may lack originality, but that’s where the vocals come in to run point, making each song feel balanced and in sync.
The album starts off strong with “Hole in the Wall,” proving that they did not give up their roots on the heavy side of things. As the album progresses, it begins to mellow out with songs such as “Take Me Away.” You’ll soon follow the formula The Plot In You laid out before you, as it shifts from heavy to soft and a few mixed tracks in between, such as “My Old Ways.” There are about five softer songs on the album, leaving the rest to be either pure bangers or dark, twisted tunes much like one of my favorites, “Pillhead.” This song, and many others, has a resemblance to Tewers’s solo EP Dead Kid, but “Pillhead” has a dark spoken/whispered monologue that turns into one of the most memorable songs on the album, with a chilling chorus and amazing vocals to follow. One song to surely be repeated has to be “Time Changes Everything.” Not only does it tug at your heartstrings, giving any listener the feels, but it has a powerful chorus, and for a soft song, even has screams. The albums’ conclusion is definitely the most unique song off the album and is quite possibly the most personal Tewers has ever written. “Happiness In Self Destruction” tells us a story with some acoustic and ambient effects giving it an old-timey feel, as if it were from an old record. It concludes the album in a very sincere way, but also leaves you craving to drop the needle on the record to listen to it once more.
Happiness In Self Destruction is the perfect example of how a band should evolve. It is an album that combines past releases and side projects as well as adopting a new sound to separate themselves from the rest. Not only is it different, but it’s something that older fans will love as well as newcomers alike. The three year wait for this album was totally worth it and the work put into it was clearly shown. Make sure you stick around two minutes after the final song, for Tewers left us and Rise Records (with whom TPIY recently parted ways) a very special treat. This hidden track will make you truly appreciate the work he has put into the album as well as understand why the transition to Stay Sick Recordings was greatly needed.
by Justin LaMot
Long Island’s Amityville Music Hall could hardly contain the excitement on September 6th for ERRA’s headlining tour. For a cramped venue, it felt like a festival. The crowd was fueled with energy as fans pushed their way toward the stage, reaching for the mic to scream their favorite Invent, Animate lyrics. Lead vocalist Ben English put on one of the most powerful performances I have seen this year, sending chills down my spine and even making me yell the lyrics while taking these photos. Impressive and inspiring, Polyphia mellowed the crowd with their sweet progressive instrumentals. Yet the main attraction was of course ERRA who delivered massive force inside the small venue. The strength of vocalist Ian Eubanks’s screams sent everyone to the stage, while Jesse Cash’s cleans guided everyone to sing along before tearing everything apart in the pit.
Photos and text by Justin LaMot