May 14, 2015

Amaranthe / Santa Cruz / I Prevail - Rams Head Live

By Bob Suehs

www.rocknrollexperience.com

Amaranthe / Santa Cruz / I Prevail

May 14, 2015

Baltimore, MD

Rams Head Live

Santa Cruz Set List: Bonafide Heroes, My Remedy, Let Them Burn, Bye Bye Babylon, We Are The Ones To Fall, Wasted & Wounded, Aiming High

Amaranthe Set List: Digital World/Intro, Trinity, Hunger, Invincible, Razorblade, Lightyears, Serendipity, true, Massive Addictive, Over and Done, Afterlife, Electroheart, Drum Solo, Leave Everything Behind, Amaranthine, Call Out My Name, ENCORE: Automatic, Dynamite, Drop Dead Cynical, The Nexus

This show started early; doors were 6:30 PM and show started at 7:30 PM with Santa Cruz first up. Santa Cruz are a fun Swedish hair metal band who’s style reminds me of late 80’s Sunset Strip glam with the only current band that I can even compare them to being Crashdiet.

Santa Cruz played a kick ass 30 minute set of sleaze rock but sadly the crowd was still filtering in as they were playing which meant they played to a very small audience. Regardless Santa Cruz played a solid set and rocked the crowd in attendance!

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I Prevail were next and their style was quite different from what Santa Cruz delivered. I Prevail is a mix of nu-metal and hardcore with 2 singers alternating styles of clean vocals and screaming.

I Prevail were much darker than Santa Cruz and I’m not sure how the audience reaction was to the band because most of their set was in darkness or with very limited lighting.

I Prevail are best known for their cover of Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space” but sadly I missed them performing that one because I had to run over to Soundstage to catch the beginning of Black Stone Cherry’s set!

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Elize, the female singer for Amaranthe pretty much owns the show and her presence is the most important thing on their stage. At one point during the set Elize began dancing on Olof’s leg as if it were a stripper pole and her energy onstage was what carried the bulk of the show. Musically I am not sure if the band played to a complete backing track or just utilized samples because at one point Olof’s guitar stopped working and he sat it on the stage floor to exam it....at this point there were still guitars playing in the live mix despite Olof’s guitar being off. Regardless, the Amaranthe live experience is a fun dance/metal/industrial fusion which is totally upbeat and captivating.

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I’m not totally sold on the band needing 3 singers because an act like Lacuna Coil does what they do with just 2 singers; I understand the male/female dynamic but having 3 singers is a bit too much in my opinion and they could do without one of the male vocalists.

Timing is everything and on this night you had Nightwish performing in Silver Spring as well as Rival Sons performing right down the street; the Amarynthe show had a decent amount of people but was far from packed and I blame that in part to Nightwish performing on the same night here.

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