Live Review: Flyleaf "Unite and Fight Tour" — House of Blues, Anaheim
Sun, 09 May 2010 14:54:33
Few bands bring it like Flyleaf.
When they hit the stage at the sold out Anaheim House of Blues on Saturday, a surge of cathartic energy nearly shook Downtown Disney to its very core—from the venue itself to the heart of the Peter Pan ride.
In fact, the Downtown Disney House of Blues may have been a perfect host for Flyleaf's Unite and Fight Tour with 10 Years and Fair to Midland because the headliner's story is one of the most inspiring in all of hard rock.
Flyleaf's risen through the rock 'n' roll ranks due to the kind of endless work and dreaming that the best Disney stories have always been replete with. Flyleaf frontwoman Lacey may be the closest thing that modern music has to a true heroine—in the fairy tale sense. She's got an uncontainable energy on stage and her delivery remains flawless. The band surrounding her stands equally entrancing and energetic.
Bassist Pat Seals slowly sauntered up to the microphone for set opener, "In the Dark." He intoned the song's first lines alongside Lacey in hypnotic fashion. His calculated bass thud added a dreamy layer to Jared Hartman and Sameer Bhattacharya's vibrant riff volley. From the second Lacey and Pat began singing, Flyleaf pulled the crowd into their world for the next 80 minutes, and it was magical and thought provoking all at the same time. Disney could take note…
Flyleaf quickly segued from "In the Dark"'s epic buildup into a fiery "Beautiful Bride." Lacey circled the stage with palpable poise as she carried the chorus straight to the heavens. Crooning out the spacey bridge right from the bombastic refrain, it was clear just how immense the singer's range is. "Cassie" exploded with snapping riffs and Lacey's seamless shift from screaming to soaring. New cuts from the band's phenomenal sophomore offering Memento Mori [A&M/Octone], "Chasm" and "The Kind," resounded with earth-shattering sonic shockwaves as the band locked into an impenetrable groove with furious headbanging.
"This Close" illuminated simply how potent Flylead are. From its guitar stomp to the undeniable and unforgettable hook, the song caused a sing-a-long within the crowd that sounded like a choir. Current single "Missing" upheld that momentum with its massive chorus. Live, Flyleaf teeter between the explosive elegance of early Deftones and Alice In Chains' heartfelt and heavy exploration of the human condition—however, they've also got hard rock's best frontwoman at the helm.
In addition, Flyleaf give more than most to their fans. Towards the end of the show, Lacey took a second to address the crowd. Humble and honest, she proclaimed, "We're just a group of friends from a small town in Texas that started a band…We believe that everybody is made for a purpose, and it's a purpose only you can fulfill. We want to challenge you to arise and be all that you dream."
The words arrived to crowd cheers, and the band tore through an uplifting rendition of "Arise."
10 Years proved the perfect prelude to Flyleaf churning out a 50-minute set of hits including "Beautiful" and "Wasteland" as well as incredibly captivating new cuts "Dead in the Water" and "Shoot It Out." Fair to Midland's poppy progressive hard rock set the stage aptly for everyone too.
Hopeful and heavy, the Unite and Fight Tour is everything that a hard rock jaunt should be. Flyleaf weave the perfect fairy tale for the genre…
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