Both Pierce The Veil and Sleeping With Sirens boast enthusiastic fanbases to say the least, the tour was sold out months in advance, tickets were even being sold for more than four times the amount of their original price in the few weeks leading up to the shows and the queue for the show in Leeds backed up to the street behind the venue hours before doors were scheduled to open.
Given the similar genres of the nights co-headliners, openers Issues are definitely on the heavier side of the lineup with Tyler Carter’s high pitched versatile R&B vocals contrasted with co-vocalists Michael Bohn’s hefty screams. Their six song setlist including riff driven Stingray Affliction and ridiculously catchy electronic filled Hooligans brought out the best of their abilities to compose tracks that blend beefy metalcore with experimental modern nu metal and post-hardcore vocals. Issues looked right at home on the stage, it’s effortless, full of swagger and a very impressive way to start the night.
The last time Sleeping With Sirens were in Leeds, they earned a slot on the main stage at Leeds Festival and tonight they seemed just as fiery as they did on that day. The band follow the same code as most of the popular alternative bands that have come out of America in the past few years. Starting out as a post-hardcore band, they’ve developed their own sound and they’re back with a bang, their fourth album Madness was released last month and dropping straight into Kick Me, the first song released from that album, Sleeping With Sirens entered the stage and made an instant impact.
However highlight of the set came in the form of Roger Rabbit followed by their cover of Goo Goo Dolls classic Iris, introduced by vocalist Kellin Quinn as a track that “Goes out to the ladies in the room” which was questioned by a member of the band and Quinn continued “What about the boys? Is there even any boys here?” It’s no secret the majority of fans of the two co-headliners tonight are female, with that being said it’s definitely not a quiet crowd and Iris was sung back at the band with as much passion as if it were one of their own songs.
Quinn’s high pitched voice is a staple of the band’s music, the acoustic tracks sound beautiful, older songs like If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn forced him to bring out the screams which have worked their way out of a lot of Sleeping With Sirens’ newer work, and the new tracks like Go Go Go and We Like It Loud sound like they put their album Feel (2013) on steroids and sent it to boot camp. Expect things to only go up from here.
One single white sheet is what separated the enthusiastic fans from tonight’s headliners. Silhouettes of each member of Pierce The Veil were reflected onto the sheet eliciting screams from the thrilled capacity of the venue. As the curtain dropped the band went straight into Collide With The Sky album opener Hell Above, not even one song into their set and Leeds O2 was already dowsed in confetti. The San Diego boys ripped apart the stage with crazy fast-paced guitar melodies and synchronised headbanging and strange dancing movements from the whole band. Jaime Preciado (bass) had more energy than a toddler, constantly dotting about the stage, tumble turns and posi jumps included. The set included mostly tracks from their 2012 release Collide With The Sky and even though the band are currently working on new music there was only the familiar tracks on show tonight. Caraphernelia and Bulls In The Bronx showcase their talents to write post-hardcore hits and Props & Mayhem proves a cleaner, more melodic side to their set.
Much like Sleeping With Sirens breaking down into a few slow tracks, vocalist Vic Fuentes goes solo for I’m Low On Gas And You Need A Jacket. However it’s encore King For A Day that illustrates why the band are where they’re at today. Kellin Quinn features on the recorded version of this song however Pierce The Veil were joined on stage by Sleeping With Sirens guitarist Nick Martin for a dominant and forceful end to the show, leaving the fans awaiting a new record that has been a long time coming. The city of Leeds however won’t have to wait long for the arrival of the Pierce The Veil crew again as the band are playing the Sunday of this year’s Leeds Festival.