Vanna headlines first show at The Palladium

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By Nicholas DiNatale and Lena Mirisola
Staff Writers

On Saturday, February 13th, 2010, The Valentine’s Day Massacre took place at The Palladium in Worcester, Massachusetts. The show featured many New England-based alternative and post-hardcore acts, including Boston based act, Vanna, who was headlining the show.

From the photo pit, right in front of the stage, The Palladium appeared larger than life, with stadium seating high above the main floor and fans lined up from the front barrier to the bars and merchandise tables in the back. The pit filled within minutes of the doors opening and people packed themselves up to the barrier in order to get as close to the stage as possible. On the other side of the barrier, the other photographers and the security personnel prepared themselves for a long night of music and position shuffling. Shortly, the lights dimmed and gave way to the first act of the night.

With Words

With Words is a five piece metalcore band that was formed in Massachusetts. The band has released a demo, but is still yet to be signed. Their sound draws some comparison to the older songs that A Day To Remember produced, with heavy riffs and very similar screams.  They played songs that appear on their demo, including “Never Yours”.

The band was full of energy and showed an abundance of stage presence while on The Palladium’s stage; one which is huge for the band’s resume. Their liveliness and exciting music made them enjoyable to the crowd and the press alike. With Words plans on releasing their first full-length album at some point during the year 2011, however, no specific date is available as of yet. They are a young, up and coming band with a great deal of potential for success on the hardcore scene.

A Faylene Sky

Five piece post-hardcore band, A Faylene Sky was the next of the bands to take the stage. Formed in Providence, Rhode Island, the band brought a solid set and good deal of energy to the stage.  Their set list consisted of songs such as “Last Call For Lost Souls”, which are featured on their debut EP, “Define Alive”. The EP was released during July of 2009, and since then, the band had been playing shows and gaining popularity throughout the northeast.

Their songs consist of a mix between clean and screaming vocals, and very much resemble the majority of post-hardcore songs.  They combine their strong vocal mix with inventive guitar riffs, double bass drumming, and harsh breakdowns. Similar to With Words, A Faylene Sky possesses plenty of potential to find success on the hardcore scene. They have already shared stages with plenty of accomplished bands and will certainly continue to land shows with major bands.

View From An Airplane

Alternative rock band View From An Airplane was the next to take the stage at The Palladium. The four piece band came together during the summer of 2009 and recorded their EP, “All The Right Words” shortly after. The EP was well recorded, and even included a guest-vocal appearance by John O’Callaghan of The Maine.

View From An Airplane’s sound is a lot softer than the other bands that appeared at The Valentine’s Day Massacre. Their songs feature entirely clean vocals and slower tempos, giving them their pop/alternative-rock classification.  Despite the genre difference between the other performers, View From An Airplane received a very warm welcome to the stage. They played through their entire EP while they pranced around on the stage, with the crowd enjoying every minute of it.

Armor For The Broken

The next band to take the stage would be arguably the heaviest band of the night, Armor For The Broken. They are a New England-based, five piece metalcore band that has released a three-song demo, and also a full-length album which has yet to be released. Their music is very heavy, and resembles a good deal of fellow metalcore bands, but theirs possesses entirely screamed vocals.

On the Palladium’s stage, they played songs from their demo, in addition to an assortment of songs that will presumably appear on their full length. Their whole set was very lively and well-enjoyed by the crowd even despite the lack of coherence regarding their vocals. Since the show, Armor For The Broken has been playing shows along with Vanna. Once these shows have been played, they will continue to play assorted local shows in order to gain more popularity.

A Loss For Words

A Loss For Words is a pop-punk band that was formed in the Boston area. Although, like View From An Airplane, they were one of the lighter bands to take the stage at the Palladium, they still received a very warm welcome. They possess a sound that is very similar to older pop-punk, such as Hit The Lights. This sound includes clean vocals, upbeat riffs, and a generally pop-like feel to the music.

Of all the bands, A Loss For Words was arguably the one with the largest amount of stage presence. They played songs that appear on their debut album while simply appearing to be having a great time on stage, in addition to playing an impressive show.

The band is very popular in the Boston area, but is currently trying to spread their name elsewhere by supporting their album, “The Kids Can’t Lose”, which was released during 2009.  They are currently touring in Europe and will be coming back to the US to continue playing shows here.

Our Last Night

Five piece, New Hampshire-based post-hardcore band, Our Last Night was the second to last band to grace the stage before Vanna.  They are currently playing in support of their sophomore album, “The Ghosts Among Us”, but will release their third full length album, “We Will All Evolve”, on May 4th. To the delight of the crowd, they played a small number of their upcoming songs. However, they mainly played older songs, from their first two albums. These included one of their most popular, “Escape”, to which much of the crowd sang along to.

Our Last Night will be back at the Palladium to play Skatefest 2010, in addition to playing multiple CD release shows and partaking in Asking Alexandria’s upcoming headlining tour. Their new album is set to be a hit amongst the post-hardcore community, as the band has undoubtedly matured since their sophomore effort.

Vanna

By the time Vanna hit the stage, the crowd was still filled with an enormous amount of energy. Their set started with them projecting the debut of their newest music video for the song “Trashmouth” on a large screen on the stage. The crowd buzzed with anticipation for the premier and for the band to begin playing. While on the stage, they emphasized how grateful they were to be headlining a show at The Palladium. Their show was in support of their most recent album, “A New Hope”, which was released in 2009. They have a brand new album in the works, which they mentioned several times while occupying the stage. Musically, their set was fantastic. They played the majority of their album’s most popular songs and delighted the crowd with their abundance of energy.

They left the stage after exerting all of their energy on satisfying their fans, and did exactly that. Since The Valentine’s Day Massacre, Vanna has toured with fellow post-hardcore band, Gwen Stacey. They will also be playing Skatefest 2010 at The Palladium, and then touring in Europe, before playing a portion of the Vans Warped Tour. Their next album should be a big hit amongst the band’s large New England following, along with their growing number of fans elsewhere.

Throughout the entire show, the crowd maintained an unprecedented energy level. Crowd surfers were constantly making their way up front, fans were screaming and singing along and everyone was watching a very formidable display of music. Every band that appeared on the stage jumped around and just had fun playing their music. After spending the entire night in the photo pit, it was very hard to hear after the show was over. That comes with standing directly in front of the speakers. Either way, the show was an incredible experience in every way. Many of the bands from the Valentine’s Day Massacre will be re-appearing at Skatefest 2010, which will be held at the Palladium on May 8th. For anyone who is a fan of the bands playing, it is highly recommended that they make an attempt to attend the show. You definitely will not be disappointed.

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