May 18, 2022

Front Line Assembly / REIN - Soundstage

Category: Live Reviews




Baltimore, MD


Front Line Assembly Set List:  Intro, Killing Grounds, Unknown, Hatevol, Plasticity, Angriff, Arbeit, Deadened, Resist, Bio-Mechanic, Millenium, ENCORE:  I.E.D., Mindphaser


Initially Front Line Assembly were supposed to open for Ministry in 2021 but Covid got in the way and things changed.  Flash forward to 2022 and Front Line Assembly headlined their own tour with REIN as direct support.

 REIN is from Stockholm and her electro/techno rooted music is equal parts 80’s, Dance, Pop, Rock, and all things artistically unique.  Watching REIN perform on this night I saw elements of Peter Gabriel, Michael Jackson, Grace Slick, and Portishead in her other worldly onstage performance.  Many of her dance moves were clearly borrowed from The King of Pop.

 REIN took the stage a little after 9:20 PM and her set was anything but ordinary.  Performing as a one person act, REIN brought dance beats, big bass lines, and true Rave elements to the stage.  REIN was not feeling well on this night but judging by her onstage performance you could not tell she was sick because she gave it her all and delivered a solid performance.

 Interesting side note(s):  REIN’s father is Paul Rein, he was a career singer in the 80’s and his songs have been covered by Christina Aguilera (“Come On Over”), Jessica Simpson (“I’ve Got My Eyes On You”), Victoria Beckham, Mandy Moore, and many more.  REIN’s half brother is Sebastian Ingrosso from Swedish House MafiaREIN refused to open for Marilyn Manson on a European Tour.

 REIN’s set was punchy, atmospheric, beat heavy, and to the point; when Front Line Assembly took the stage the room went much darker and the overall tone was a mix of metal and hardcore industrial.

 Front Line Assembly are a Canadian based industrial act fronted by former Skinny Puppy member Bill Leeb.  The current touring version of Front Line Assembly consists of Bill Leeb on vocals, Rhys Fulber on keys/programming, Tim Skold on guitar, and Jon Siren on drums.

 Currently touring for their 2021 release “Mechanical Soul” Leeb commented that the last time the band had performed in Maryland was several years ago on Halloween.

 Tim Skold started his career in the 80’s fronting Metal band Shotgun Messiah and later joined KMFDM, started his own band simply called SKOLD, and re-emerged in a big way as writer/producer/bassist/guitarist for MARILYN MANSON.

 Skold and drummer Jon Siren brought the “rock” elements onstage and delivered “live” guitar and drums which gave the Front Line Assembly live show a harder edge.

 Drummer Jon Siren is from the band Mankind is Obsolete.  He has also recorded/toured with Psyclon Nine and is the touring drummer for IAMX.

 Baltimore Soundstage closed off half of the club thus making the room look more filled in since it was a smaller crowd for this show.  Rock shows on a Wednesday night in Baltimore, Maryland are always hit or miss and this one had a decent sized crowd by the time Front Line Assembly took the stage.

 The crowd itself was an interesting bunch:  You had old school goths, old school industrial fans, club kids, and the common ground amongst the entire room was their love for industrial & dance music.  Many familiar faces from the defunct Maryland goth club Orpheus were present for this show.

 At the merch table fans could purchase limited edition REIN vinyl, autographed Front Line Assembly CD’s, several different tour shirt designs, and a Tim Skold guitar pick/pin pack.  

Band members were walking through the crowd at various points throughout the night and I couldn't resist stopping Tim Skold for a quick selfie.  Skold walked through Baltimore's Inner Harbor earlier in the day and posted a photo on his social media in front of a large ship.

Author: Bob Suehs