The Devil Wears Prada released their 7th studio album, The Act on October 11th, and are currently on tour promoting this release, along with Norma Jean, and Gideon, who also have new studio albums, and made a stop at Vinyl Las Vegas in The Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas.
The first act to take the stage was Gideon, a heavy metal band from Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Formed in 2008, Gideon’s current lineup consists of Daniel McWhorter (vocals), Tyler Riley (guitar), Caleb Derusha (bass) and Jake Smelley (drums), and they have a new LP, Out Of Control, which came out two weeks prior to this performance. Having first broken into the scene as a 'Christian' band, they are vehemently rejecting those earlier ideals. They open their set with "Bite Down", a very heavy song with chugging guitars and “tough guy” lyrics (basically, a lot of cursing and talk about kicking ass). They follow that up with "Cursed", which features Bryan Garris of Knocked Loose on the album, a song that deals with feelings of imminent failure and lifelong bad luck. Next comes the song "Sleep", another 'tough guy' jam, which to me seems like a very defensive stance to the band's change in morals, ideals and style of music. I could care less about their personal beliefs, but I find all the tough talk to be a bit puerile. Gideon has a lot of energy, and I love the heavy guitars and fast bass beats, I’d just like to see them get past this rebellious teenager phase and get back to writing some more thoughtful lyrics, such as those on their album Calloused. They definitely put on a powerful live show and are worth a look if you are wanting some heavy hardcore metal.
Norma Jean is an American metalcore band from Georgia, formed in 1997, with a current lineup of only two named members, Cory Brandan (vocals) and Grayson Stewart (guitar). They have released their latest LP, All Hail, which came out at midnight the night of this performance. They kicked off their set with "I The Planet", a song which lyrically has only three lines, yet is so powerful - It’s the perfect tune to ramp things up again after the break between sets. Next is "Mind Over Mind", a short and brutal song from their new album, and following "The End of All Things Will Be Televised" is "1,000,000 Watts", a song about the energy felt after escaping a toxic relationship. In my opinion, this is one of their best songs and one that gets plenty of use in my Spotify playlists. Since this was my first time seeing Norma Jean live, this was my first time hearing them perform it live, and I was not disappointed. The entire set was filled with energy and kept the crowd engaged with plenty of dancing and singing along. Norma Jeanfinished off their 10-song set with "Deathbed Atheist" and had the packed house begging for more.
Headlining the show was The Devil Wears Prada, a metalcore band from Dayton, Ohio, with Mike Hranica (vocals), Jeremy DePoyster (guitar, vocals), Andy Trick (bass), and Kyle Sipress (guitar, backing vocals), as well as touring and session members Jonathan Gering (keyboard, synths), Giuseppe Capolupo (drums), and Mason Nagy (bass). Formed in 2005, the band has released seven studio albums and two EPs, including their latest release, The Act. Long-time heavyweights in the metalcore scene, TDWP always bring it to their live shows - I’ve had the pleasure of seeing and photographing them a few times and their energy and professionalism always impresses me. Front man Hranica really engages the crowd and always acknowledges his tour mates and the venue and their staff. While this tour is in support of their new album, TDWP still gave their longtime fans the full-course meal, performing songs from six of their seven LPs and both of their EPs. The 17-song set even included an extremely well-done cover of the Foo Fighters “All My Life.” They closed out their set with an old favorite from their 2007 Plagues album, “Hey John, What’s Your Name Again?” This was another all-around solid metalcore show, and all three bands put on some great performances and melted the faces off old fans and new. There are still a lot of dates available on this tour, and if you like metalcore you can’t go wrong with this trio of hardcore heavyweights - check out more HERE.
The Devil Wears Prada Photos from Randy Udell / R U Rockin' Photos
Norma Jean Photos from Randy Udell / R U Rockin' Photos
Gideon Photos from Randy Udell / R U Rockin' Photos