I had the pleasure of attending the winter Leveler tour featuring August Burns Red, Silverstein, Texas In July, and I, the Breather at the Theatre of Living Arts in Philadelphia on March 4, 2012. It was a great show. I have included the setlist for each band, a description of their set, and photos I took. NOTE: The photos I took were taken on my cellphone in the crowd. They are intended to give you an idea of what the show was like.
I, The Breather
Bruised and Broken
The Common Good
I, the Breather is a five piece metalcore band from Maryland. They are a band that I checked out specifically because of this tour. When it was first announced, this was the one band that I had heard the least about and I had never really listened to. I was very excited to check out their set. What I saw was an awesome show. They packed their set with more energy then I think, even the crowd was expecting. Bassist, Armand Vincent and lead singer, Shawn Spann were doing stage dives and getting into the crowd to interact with everyone. The musicians were really frenetic, moving all over the stage all the while sounding near perfect. They moved through a set of mostly older songs but featured a few songs from their recently released album, Truth and Purpose. They were a big hit with the crowd, a fact that I found out when I went to pick up their CD after the show I was disappointed to find out that it was sold out. I, the Breather is an up and coming band that is sure to take the scene by storm.
Texas In July
It’s Not My First Rodeo
Hook, Line, And Sinner
As much as I love the other bands on this lineup, I was looking forward to Texas In July the most. I had seen both August Burns Red and Silverstein before, but not Texas In July. Not only was I excited to see them but also to hear how their songs translated to a live setting. I love breakdowns and they have some especially awesome ones. I also love when metalcore bands scream “OH” and then commence to go into a breakdown. Texas In July didn’t create this but they may have perfected it, see “Hook, Line and Sinner”. That moment and the end of the song, “Elements” were the two things I wanted to hear the most going into the concert. Both parts delivered. I got a tingly feeling when I heard Alex Good screaming, “I am the fire, the wind and the sea.” SO GOOD. The rest of the set was great and I was impressed by the songs on their most recent album, One Reality. Going into the show, I didn’t think that album held a candle to their debut full length, I Am but their performance of those songs has me rethinking that position. They definitely lived up to my expectations as a great live band.
Sick as Your Secrets
Smashed Into Pieces
I Am The Arsonist
Kevin ( says on setlist sheet)
It’s My Job To Keep Punk Rock Elite (NOFX cover)
Hearts (American Nightmare cover)
F***The Boarder (Propagandhi cover)
See Ya Bill
Smile In Your Sleep
Bleeds No More
I have seen Silverstein numerous times and they put on another awesome set this show. It was a mix of their hits from almost all of their albums and a bunch of new songs, which come off of their new release, Short Songs, made up of short original songs and covers. I actually enjoyed the covers and it was cool that JB Brubaker, guitarist of August Burns Red came out to play bass on the NOFX one. They have been playing their new song, “See Ya Bill”, a seven second hardcore punk tune on this tour three times in a row and switching instruments. Seeing vocalist, Shane Told on drums and drummer, Paul Koehler on bass was pretty cool. After that, and because this was the last day of the tour, they decided to let some people from the audience and members of the crew play it as well. That was neat. They played it six times in total and the crowd seemed to love it. With a seven second song it didn’t take that long at all. The highlight of their set for me was the song, “Vices” from their album, A Shipwreck in the Sand. Told put the mic into the crowd right in front of me to sing into it during my favorite part, “I’m not coming home tonight, I’d rather sleep on the street. I’m not coming home tonight, I won’t sleep with the devil.” It was a memorable and fun set. Sadly, the crowd was kind of lukewarm on them, as they were the poppiest band on the bill but I think they did a great job keeping the show’s energy going and warming up the crowd for the headliner.
August Burns Red
Cutting The Ties
Your Little Suburbia Is In Ruins
The Truth of A Liar
Salt & Light
Poor Millionaire (played twice because of equipment issues)
A behemoth of a band in the metalcore scene, August Burns Red is one of the hardest working and deservedly popular bands in the scene. They are a product of their faith and they make it a point to let everyone know that because of their savior, Jesus Christ and all the fans they are able to exist as a band, they make it a point to say this during every show. They make their point and are not overly preachy about and then just continue to rock out.
They had a very simple light set up which was perfectly suited to their style. They are about the business of playing a good show for everyone, not fancy light shows. Except for the technical difficulties in the middle of the set, they sounded amazing. The band has such an amazing stage presence and they kept the crowd in the palm of their hands the entire time. Whether it was to get the crowd to clap in rhythm with the song, start a massive circle pit, crowd surf or to execute a wall of death, the crowd was ready to roll. The energy of the crowd seemed to fuel the band and help them to perform with even more energy and with even bigger smiles on their faces. Because this was the last show of the tour and a sort of hometown show (they are from Lancaster, PA) they promised, and delivered a setlist that was a little bit longer than the others on this tour.
They played a wide range of songs from all of their albums, including going back to their first album Thrill Seeker for the song, “Your Little Suburbia Is in Ruins.” They played a ton of stuff from their crushing new album, Leveler and it was all well received. The highlights of the set were “Internal Cannon”, “White Washed”, “Poor Millionaire”, which they had to play twice due to some issues with the guitars, and the drum solo outro out of “Leveler”. It helped show off the skills of drummer Matt Grenier. They decided to close with “Composure” as a part of a two song encore that was the perfect punctuation of the night.
Next time any of these bands come to your area make sure you check them out. Support live music!