A Reunited Anberlin Plays to a Sold Out Crowd at the TLA

It’s been over five years since Anberlin called it quits. But earlier this year the band announced a string of North American tour dates with I the Mighty as support. One of the first to sell out was Philadelphia’s TLA. The demand was so high that the band added a 2nd date to their itinerary to appease the fans.

Transcending the Coma Tour

Transcending the Coma Tour.jpg

9/15/16 – Transcending the Coma Tour – The Devin Townsend Project / Between the Buried and Me with Fallujah – Theatre of Living Arts – Philadelphia, PA

Traffic and parking prevented us from witnessing opening act Fallujah’s performance. Reports seem to indicate that they put their latest release Dreamless firmly in the spotlight.

Between the Buried and Me were the second act of the evening and, as promised, played their latest album Coma Ecliptic in full. Coma Ecliptic was my favorite album of 2015, so seeing it in person was an experience that was perhaps best appreciated by those of us who had a familiarity with the concept and story. Then again, fans of progressive rock can also enjoy it as it may be the most accessible collection of songs the band has put out yet. The narrative helps to make it cohesive as a collection. Continue reading “Transcending the Coma Tour”

Exclusive: Strung Out Interview

IMG_1769

On Wednesday May 6th, Philadelphia’s Theatre of Living Arts hosted long-running punk band Strung Out as they toured behind their new album Transmission. Alpha. Delta.  In support was Red City Radio, La Armada, and Goddamnit.

Red City Radio - TLA ©2015 Henry Chung 04

A complete review of the event is difficult because by the time we arrived at the venue, Goddamnit was finishing their set and we were whisked backstage right before La Armada began their set.  We saw all of Red City Radio and they offered up a delightfully gruff, bluesy good time in support of their self-titled album.  As enjoyable as the album is, their live show made an even bigger impression.

Continue reading “Exclusive: Strung Out Interview”

Anberlin Bids Farewell to the ‘City of Brotherly Love’

Anberlin Farewell Tour TLA Philly ©2014 Henry Chung 06

Earlier this year Anberlin announced that they would put out their final album Lowborn‘ [Tooth & Nail Records] and would head out for one final world tour including a stint of this past Summer’s Van’s Warped Tour. In an announcement video, they stated that they would rather end on a high note than burnout and fade away.

Anberlin Farewell Tour TLA Philly ©2014 Henry Chung 03

The band was originally supposed to play one date in Philadelphia at the TLA on 11/15 but with the show sold out within hours, they added a second date to the city (11/11). Luckily a good friend and fellow fan managed to get us tickets to both dates and I was allowed access to capture those final moments of their time in the ‘City of Brotherly Love’ together.

The first night they had Gasoline Heart open for them to lackluster fanfare.

Anberlin’s set has been mostly the same throughout the tour so not a whole lot was changed that night. Their set consisted mostly of expected fan favorites such as “Never Take Friendship Personal”, “Paperthin Hymn”, “Feel Good Drag” and “Readyfuels” with a single encore to close out the night. Fighting back tears, frontman Stephen Christian ended their set with “(*fin)” off of their album Cities.

Anberlin Farewell Tour TLA Philly ©2014 Henry Chung 05

On their final night in Philadelphia, MxPx frontman Mike Herrera was their opening act. Doing a loose acoustic set, he was taking requests from the audience most of the night. Once again Anberlin came out to the crowd of rabid fans who were almost at the brink of tears knowing that tonight was the very last night they’d ever see their favorite band together on stage again. Their set was similar to the one a few nights ago but with a few other songs thrown into the mix plus different arrangements. Taking a brief moment to speak to the audience, Stephen shared a story about how several years back he was so excited and in the moment that he had forgotten what city he was at and said to the crowd “Thank you and good night Boston!” Some of the people in the audience were there that night it happened. He noted that ‘this year was dedicated to all of our fans. We could’ve just ended with ‘Vital’ and called it a day. Instead, we recorded a final album and went all over the world one more time because it was what the fans would’ve wanted.’

SAMSUNG CSC

When they finished their set, it was an almost surreal moment. We were all left with a feeling of disbelief. That was it. This was the final time we ever saw them and this was their last goodbye. It’s hard to believe that I even had the chance to see them perform backstage during my run on the Vans Warped Tour let alone get the chance to see them again half a year later. This farewell tour definitely brought some closure to the band’s long 12 year career and I look forward to whatever projects each member pursues in the future.

[*fin]

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This post was written by:

Henry Chung – When Henry’s not busy updating this page and speaking in third person, he’s busy shooting and editing pictures from concerts and designing logos for bands.

The Used: Vulnerable Tour

In support of their fifth studio release, and first through Hopeless Records, The Used will is heading out on a US headlining tour through May and June.  They will be making a stop at the TLA in Philly on May 15th and Crocodile Rock in Allentown on May 22nd with Dead Sara and Stars In Stereo supporting. Click below for dates. Continue reading “The Used: Vulnerable Tour”

Riot Fest East 2012

Last year’s Riot Fest East was a dream come true. To see so many of my favorite bands from the past reunited as well current faves all on a single day, let alone it all happening on my birthday, was a one I would never forget.

This year’s Riot Fest lineup surely does not disappoint. With the recent announcement of Refused, The Promise Ring & Boy Sets Fire (all recently reunited) as well as OFF! (former Circle Jerks/Black Flag singer Keith Morris’ new band) as well as Lancaster, PA’s own August Burns Red. More details to come as the dates gets closer.

Thursday: 1997-2011

Taking their last band huddle, the band took the stage. The lights go up and then the band begins their last (US) set with “Open Quotes” off of their recent and last release, No Devolución. Hammering through 20 songs from throughout their illustrious career, emotions were running very high. In between songs, frontman, Geoff Rickly shared fond memories, both good and bad, with the audience. He mentioned about the time he and the rest of the band thought they were all going to die in a plane crash while on tour right before the band erupts into “At This Velocity.” A highlight of the evening was when they played “Autobiography of a Nation” and “Cross Out the Eyes” with Tom Schlatter of Black Kites on backup vocals. Ending their set with “Turnpike Divides,” the band walked off the stage. And then… it was over.

I remember I was a freshman in college when Full Collapse came out. Their sound was very different than what was out there at the time. Their lyrics were very sincere and from the heart. Thursday’s music helped me through a lot of rough times back in the day and because of that, they have always held a special place in my heart. Seeing their last show and not to mention photographing it is still surreal. Just as the crowd cheered: THANK YOU THURSDAY! Thank you. – Henry Chung

It seems like not so long ago (actually ten years ago) I went to PJ Sounds (Emmaus people will remember that record store) and ordered a record called Full Collapse. Ten years later almost to the date I saw the band Thursday play their last show ever tonight. It was weird to be a part of that. Damn good show but a bit surreal. I grew up on that band. I’m not gonna lie they weren’t my favorite band of all time or anything but they were extremely important to the scene and to me. They will be missed and I feel lucky as hell to have gone to the TLA tonight with some of my best friends and shared this moment with them. – Josh Hoch

Thursday Full Collapsed

New Brunswick, New Jersey’s Thursday will embark on their final North American tour together. The band announced that they will go on indefinite hiatus, with plans to celebrate their successful thirteen year career together on the road. They released to following statement on their site:

Yup.  Yesterday thrice, today Thursday.  Crazy coincidence for two bands that have led such parallel and intersecting lives.  We would’ve spaced our announcement out and given the dust a chance to settle but we are about to play a bunch of shows and we didn’t want anyone to miss the chance to see us one more time, so here it goes…

If you’re reading this long version of our statement,  you’ve probably had some interaction with Thursday.  We’ve been a  band for thirteen years. We’ve played an uncountable number of shows, ranging from living rooms to stadiums.  We’ve talked to every Zine, blog, Daily, Weekly, Monthly periodical… We’ve talked to every College, Commercial and Public Radio Station and sometimes we just hung out on the street talking to strangers.  Maybe we met you.  Maybe we worked together somewhere.  Maybe you saw us or heard us with friends.  Whatever the case may be, we owe you thanks.  You’ve allowed us to be a band for thirteen years, to travel the world, to make records, to meet all of the people we’ve grown to love.  And to open for our idols, work with our heroes, employ our friends (the best crew around) and see our dreams made real.

This year, Thursday has had so much to celebrate: our new record, No Devolución, came out ten years, to the week, after the record that was to become our touchstone: Full Collapse.  To have one record still being celebrated a decade after it’s release and another to be met with such critical acclaim was really more than we ever could’ve imagined.  We just wanted to play basement shows in New Brunswick.  It’s funny… That sounds like a well-worn line now but it’s absolutely the truth.

Well, if you’ve been touched by our music or our dedication or our embarrassingly out-of-fashion sincerity, then this is for you, friend:  thank you for letting us make No Devolución.  We hope you’ve heard it.  We say “beg, borrow or steal… music is an idea… ideas are free” but we encourage you to support our fantastically sweet and hardworking label, Epitaph, by buying it if you can afford to.

Despite the fantastic year that the band has enjoyed, creatively, things haven’t been as easy for us on a personal level.  Without diving into detail, it’s fair to say that this year has been an endless series of personal difficulties.  We haven’t had any falling out and are all still close.  I’m sure that we will continue to create, in some capacity, together.  We’ve talked about turning Thursday into something else: a non-profit, a band that only records sporadically, a collection of other projects… Underneath it all, the personal circumstances involved make it impossible to continue Thursday in the spirit that has made it special.  So, we stop.  For now, at least.

We hope to see many of you at these last shows. They’ll be a lot of fun.  We promise.

Lots of love,
Geoff & Tom & Tucker & Steve & Andrew & Tim & Lukas
(Thursday)

Their music has touched millions of lives and has helped me through a lot of tough times over the years so hearing of this news has come with a lot great sadness. Their final show will be on December 30th at the TLA. If you were ever a fan of these guys you’d know how important it is to make it out to see them.