Artist: August Burns Red
New Album: Phantom Anthem
Release Date: 06 October 2017
Hailing from Lancaster, PA, USA, August Burns Red are definitely our favourite band and the biggest artist we have featured here. In late July this year, we were fortunate to have the opportunity to attend one of their UK dates of their European Tour. As we speak, the band are still in Europe and touring to celebrate “Messengers” 10th Anniversary. We reviewed the show and had a chat with the band.
2017 European Summer Tour
Date: 29 July 2017
Venue: The Fleece, Bristol, England
With huge audience anticipation August Burns Red took to the stage and slammed straight in with the opening track of their critically acclaimed album “Messengers”. The first song ‘The Truth of a Liar’ was utterly captivating as the on stage energy began to flow through the audience. Vocalist Jake Luhrs portrayed emotion and raw aggression through his defined style of vocals as the band began their set.
Shortly followed by ‘Up against the Ropes’ and into the fan favourite ‘Back Burner’, August Burns Red’s audience only seemed to build in excitement and energy. As drummer Matt Greiner took the reins and performed some of the more technical and physically demanding verses from the album, the band really came into their own. Bassist Dustin Davidson impressively complementing Jake’s vocals with both a memorable and unique backing vocal style, whilst still holding down a punchy and cutting rhythm section to the performance.
Swiftly carrying their audience through ‘The Blinding Light’ and into another stand out song from the album, ‘Composure’ erupted in the middle of the set and once again the audience lost all ability to contain their excitement. Guitarists JB Brubaker and Brent Rambler stealing the show in this song, with captivating showmanship and guitars soaring through the mix with technical leads, this was one of the most memorable songs within the set.
Next followed ‘Vital Signs’ and ‘The Eleventh Hour’. Both these songs maintained the crowd interaction from the previous fan favourites, whilst also giving a unique impression on the audience. However, next came ‘The Balance’ and ‘Black Sheep’, two of the less memorable songs, this is the section of the set where the difficulties of playing an album in full length began to show, as some of the less dedicated fans of August Burns Red showed a lessened interest in their live set. Having said this, the band pulled through and maintained a lasting impression by interacting with the crowd between songs. This allowed these issues to be overshadowed and as the performance began to build again.
The band then commenced ‘An American Dream’ and ‘Redemption’, the final songs from the “Messengers” album. As the album came to a close, the audience was left stunned. Overpowered by the raw energy which was portrayed by the band during their performance. Left wanting more, the band began a unique interlude which consisted of bassist Dustin Davidson and drummer Matt Greiner playing dual drum solo. Using syncopated rhythm and yet again showcasing the band’s versatility, The interlude was received extremely well by the audience, allowing the band to follow on with the final songs of the set and their encore.
Closing the night with their new single ‘Invisible Enemy’, fan favourites ‘Ghosts’, ‘White Washed’ and ‘Empire’, the band ended with a bang. Providing some of the new August Burns Red fans with something to sink their teeth into, this was the perfect way for the band to end their show.
After the show, we briefly caught up with bassist Dustin Davidson.
Here is what he had to say:
Ryan: So, about the album ‘Messengers’. How was it having to re-learn your own music for this tour?
Dustin: Well, compared to some of new material revisiting the ‘Messengers’ album wasn’t as challenging as I had expected it to be. But it was definitely fun going back to the old material!
Ryan: Speaking of the new material, your new single ‘Invisible Enemy’ is certainly very technical. How would you describe your new album to fans of August Burns Red?
Dustin: Compared to the other songs on ‘Phantom Anthem’, the new single is definitely the least technical song on the album. This album is full of some of our most technical music, but is less ‘weird’ than some of our other stuff. There is definitely a lot on the album for fans to enjoy and it is much more of a consistent sounding album than our previous record.
Ryan: So with regards to the ‘Messengers’ tour, do you think you will ever do another anniversary tour similar to this?
Dustin: It’s difficult to say, it’s a long time away – 2 years to be specific. I don’t think we have even thought about that yet!
Ryan: Thanks, Dustin!
Words: Ryan Simmons
Photography Credit: Sophie Pierce Photography
Featured image (header photo) from ABR facebook page
Latest single “Invisible Enemy”
To find out more about August Burns Red, visit their sites using the links below;
Official Website: http://augustburnsred.com/