The sold out signs adorned Rock City once again for the visit of Baltimore’s Pop-Punk stars, All Time Low. With a strong supporting lineup, the crowd was out in force several hours before the doors even opened.
Opening the show was New York quintet, We Are The In Crowd, who quickly warmed the crowd up with an energetic performance featuring a mixture of older songs and tracks from their latest album, Best Intentions. Despite being a female fronted group, the band avoided falling into the trap of other bands such as Paramore and VersaEmerge, and felt much more like a group, rather than a vocalist and supporting band. Jordan Eckes offered an excellent complement to lead vocalist Taylor Jardine, whilst Bassist Mike Ferri merely needs one quick gesture to get most of the crowd clapping, jumping or waving along. The band close with a huge sing-along in the form of ‘Both Sides of the Story’, and leave those who were not familiar with the band in no doubt that this band will be playing to big crowds on their own UK tour later this year.
The second of the night’s support acts was The Maine from Phoenix, Arizona. Once again welcomed enthusiastically by the now full Rock City, they launched straight into one of their signature singles ‘Inside Of You’. From there the pace slowed a little bit – The Maine play a far more downbeat offering than their tour mates, leaning more towards Indie Rock – and the middle section of the set swapped the upbeat Pop Rock for something a bit more thoughtful. Things were in danger of dragging a little, but at that point they closed out the set with a couple of livelier offerings from their latest album Pioneer and then left an expectant crowd ready for the main event.
So after a lengthy break we were finally joined by the boys from All Time Low, who wasted no time in getting the sing-alongs going with current single ‘Time Bomb’. As the set continues it becomes clear that the song choice wouldn’t have mattered, as the majority of those in attendance know every word of every song. Lead vocalist Alex Gaskarth and guitarist Jack Barakat are obviously familiar with this arrangement and frequently play to the crowd, allowing them to take over for some of the main choruses. The interruptions to the music were only brief, possibly because every comment was met by a chorus of high pitched screams that would damage the eardrums of dogs or bats, and by the end of only a couple of songs the band had amassed a lingerie collection which they could almost open a shop with. So why does this band play Rock City and adorn the cover of alternative music magazines? Well, quite simply, they play upbeat Rock music, and they do it well. Alex’s vocals were perfect throughout, and the guitar work was excellent – they aren’t exactly the most challenging musical compositions, but it would have been easy given the circumstances to ignore the music they came to play and just spend their time playing to the crowd. The set was possibly a little bit short, clocking in at only an hour, but it included all the well-known songs, and a well realised cover of ‘Monkey Wrench’ by the Foo Fighters. By the time the band closed out the final notes of ‘Dear Maria, Count Me In’, the crowd was left more than satisfied with what they’d seen.
Set List: Time-Bomb, Forget About It, Damned If I Do Ya (Damned If I Don’t), Coffee Shop Soundtrack, I Feel Like Dancin’, Heroes, Stella, Poppin’ Champagne, Guts, Lost In Stereo, Remembering Sunday
Encore: Do You Want Me Dead?, Monkey Wrench (Foo Fighters Cover), Weightless, Dear Maria Count Me In.
And you can see all of Carla’s pic from the show here: