Live Report – Blessed By A Broken Heart – Terminatour 2

2-24-09
Mixtape Cafe
Grand Rapids, MI
www.mixtapecafe.com

Illness struck the Terminatour 2 right before it rolled through Grand Rapids early last week, but the bands who did perform put on quite a show to remember [whether that’s for the best or worst is where it varies]. not every band really needed much to be said as their sets were alright at best, but three truly need to be mentioned.

Oh August – This was  the local opener for the night. 7 high school teens with obvious desires to become the next Alesana meets The Devil Wears Prada hybrid. Scene hair, girls jeans, unnecessary keyboardist, and lyrics that make you wish to lose your hearing. I know it’s mean to rip on up and comers and I generally wouldn’t, but something needs to be said before this abnd goes farther. Whether it’s the fact they opened with a “new song” that had no ending [so they all stopped awkwardly] or the fact they have 2 vocalists who, when one of them isn’t screaming, just stand still and realign their hair, it was just unbearable. I could tell a few locals were feeling it, but coming from GR it’s not too much to expect these guys got some friends from school who are just amazed to see them on stage to come out and cheer them on. I actually saw a member of the audience bow their head and walk out. It was quite a rough start.

LoveHateHero – If you didn’t listen to the last UTG RAW podcast we streamed this weekend, you missed out. The guys in LHH, or at least Pierrick are some of the most down to Earth people we’ve met. However, their set was nothing short of large scale rock. Brining mainly material from their previous 2 releases, LHH took to the stage with strength and intensity. Considering their last labum has a guitar solo on every track, the shred level was huge. The band even performed one new song from the upcoming Fight or Flight which has yet to gain a release date. The new song really was the Cornerstone to the set because, since no one outside the band has heard it, you had to pay attention to what was happening. the shredding was turned down, but the structure and hook laden melodies were cranked to 10. The evolution of the band since writing the last album 3 years ago was immediately evident and it seemed as if everyone in at the show would have agreed.

Blessed By A Broken Heart – Talk about bringing the feel of an arena show to the small club scene. BBABH, who play a well refined mix of hardcore and 80’s arena rock that’s been blended with every  Jock Jams album, stole the show [which is fine, because they headlined]. The band blazed through a 10-ish song set with a nonstop display of musical and performing talent. The stage, though only 15×20, seemed to expand with these 6 guys on it. They brought a massive set of lighting and smoke machines [which sit in front of the stage with a glowing “blessed” carved into them and really just brought the rock. I was afriad, given the intense visual factor, that the music would suffer, but it was only intensified. Add to this an encore which included the band’s Myspace only released, “Mic Skillz 2,” which is essentially a mixture of pop culture references, silly ideas, and breakdowns and you get a show that can only leave one with the word, “wow,” on their lips.

*Written By: James Shotwell*

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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