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Back in 2017, Brandon and I had the opportunity to cover the Loudwire Music Awards. There were legends of the rock and music business there like Avenged Sevenfold, Rob Halford performing with Judas Priest, Halestorm, and many more. However, one band that really stuck out to me was a band I had never heard of till that day. That band was Nothing More. They got to perform at the show, and seeing the bands energy, and the mechanical contraption they call the Scorpion Tail blew my mind and made me an instant fan. I have been fortunate enough to catch them a couple times since then has support acts. But Nothing More was finally coming back to California on a headlining tour after years of waiting and bringing with them Atreyu and Eva Under Fire. It was time to Turn It Up at the House of Blues, Anaheim.

 Opening the show was Michigan residents, Eva Under Fire. I’ve heard good things about this band, and they have popped up on my Spotify Radio from time to time, but this was my first time finally getting to see them. Starting their set with “Comatose,” lead singer Amanda Lyberg hit the stage with an explosion of energy. Running from one side of the stage to the other, making sure to get everyone in the crowd up and jumping. Guitarist and band fashionista, Chris Slapnik was dressed in a stylish Eva Under Fire onesie. Trading off hard hitting licks with fellow guitarist Rob Ryberg. These two brought the crunchy riffs to the House of Blues. Bassist Edward Joseph could be seen grooving in the back. Though he might not have been too showy, he was keeping the low-end grooving like John Entwistle. Hanging out in the back was drummer Corey Newsom, showing off the gun show has he crashed on each cymbal. Playing songs like “Blow,” “Heroin(e),” “Another Shot to the Heart,” “The Strong,” “Coming for Blood,” and ending the night with a stellar cover of Journey’s classic “Separate Ways (Worlds Apart).” Eva Under Fire was just the right kind of rock music we needed to hear to get the show started, and our heads banging.

The next band of the night is one that Uncivil Revolt is very familiar with. The metalcore legends that are Atreyu. Atreyu had just come through their own headlining tour at the Observatory back in December. So, it was a bit weird seeing them as a support act on this tour, but none the less we were happy to see them again. Now being fronted by Brandon Saller, who moved to the front of the stage from behind the drum kit. Every time I see Brandon fronting Atreyu, he just seems to have more and more charisma not being behind the kit. One person who is always a standout on stage is guitarist Dan Jacobs, with his mohawk and explorer guitar. Jacobs has been a standout guitarist in the scene for years. Not to be outdone, fellow Atreyu Guitarist Travis Miguel can be seen doing laps on stage while maintaining a rhythm that lets Jacobs go wild. Bassist Marc McKnight, sporting his ZZ Top length beard, appears to have boundless amount of energy as he head bangs so much, flipping his beard over his head. Newest member and drummer Kyle Rosa fits into the band perfectly. While being stuck behind the kit, he is still a showman like the rest of the band whipping his hair and making faces throughout the set. Atreyu’s set was filled with hits like “Baptize,” “Becoming the Bull,” “Right Side of the Bed,” “The Time is Now,” “Ex’s and Oh’s,” “Falling Down,” “Warrior,” and ending their set with my personal favorite song “Blow.” The guys in Atreyu are always a fun band to see live.

Finally, it was time to Turn it up like only Nothing More can. Kicking off their set with one of their newest singles “Turn It Up Like (Stand in the Fire),” and the boys of Nothing More came out attacking the audience with high energy. Halfway through the song, vocalist Jonny Hawkins jumped on the Scorpion Tail. Their giant mechanical contraption that launches Jonny into the air, normally saved for the latter half of the show. And yet, this was the first song of the set and Jonny was flying high in the air. If there was anyone running low on energy, they just got hit with their second wind at this time moment. Guitarist Mark Vollelunga, seen wearing a shirt with one sleeve ripped off and no shoes, shreds his pearl white guitar. Bassist Daniel Oliver has the best war face of the band. As his picking along his bass lines, you can see his grit and contort his face as he feels the music in his soul. The man behind the kit, drummer Ben Anderson was all smiles. You could tell how much he loved to be back playing live music again. Playing songs like “Let ‘em Burn,” “Mr. MTV,” “Do You Really Want It?” “Jenny,” “Go to War,” “Tired of Winning,” “Fadein/Fadeout,” “Ocean Floor,” and ending their night with “This is the Time (Ballast).” Nothing More put together a stellar set list of some of their biggest songs and left the audiences wanting more.

This tour was originally announced with Asking Alexandria co-headlining the tour. I have yet to be able to see them, and hearing they had to drop off the tour was disappointing to probably more people than just myself. However, the rest of the bands made sure to bring all the energy they had to make up for fans that felt they may be missing out. Nothing More continues to be a standout act in the hard rock scene. The energy every member of this band brings to the stage is hard for any other band to match. Atreyu continues to be a solid metalcore act in the scene that plays a solid set night after night. Eva Under Fire was a gem in the rough to find and open this tour. These bands all came together to pack the House of Blues, and bring a night of rock back to Anaheim.


Matt Martinez

Editor - Orange County

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