Monday, November 16, 2009

The AP Fall Ball Tour 2009

Hey Everyone!
Hope you all had a good weekend. I know I did, I went to Toronto friday morning to check out the AP Fall Ball Tour 2009. I have to say, overall I was very impressed and had a good time despite being one of the oldest audience members haha. I've gotten used to this... even Green Day and Blink shows make me feel old when I look around at all the kids. Now, if you're unfamiliar with the tour, let me give you a few details. It was put together with the help of reader polls in Alternative Press magazine. The goal of the tour was to hype some new or upcoming acts that people might be interested in because, as it was repeated throughout the night, "you cant listen to the same stuff over and over again". So heres a brief overview of the acts from the tour, a couple examples of their sound and my thoughts on their performances!

The first band to take the stage was a UK group by the name of You Me At Six. They played a fairly solid half hour set of catchy pop punk songs that kept the audience's attention. The big hit of the night was probably their performance of Lady Gaga's Poker Face. All in all, it was a good set but nothing phenomenal. If you're a fan of groups like Forever The Sickest Kids or Boys Like Girls, you might like these guys. They have some potential, and I'm sure that after this tour they will experience a higher level of success here over seas.

Next up, the techno/pop punk brainchild of Luis Dubuc: The Secret Handshake. An interesting performance for sure. An auto-tune equipped mic, a Mac computer, and a couple instruments is all it takes to get a crowd of teenagers moving. Again, as for the point of this tour really, very few people seemed familiar with the act and it was perhaps only memorable due to yet another cover. This time it was the Cascada classic "Everytime We Touch". Not bad, but I cant say I was enthralled by the stage performance. If you like A Rocket To The Moon or Playradioplay, you might like this band.

The third band on the opening round of performances you may know... they go by the name Set Your Goals. This diverse six piece group hails from the San Francisco Bay area. I say "diverse" because although they also play that brand of radio friendly pop punk, they dabble in the hardcore genre as well. It makes for an interesting album. Anyways, I think they played a great set, but were not a prefect fit for the tour itself. The audience appeared more than a little confused for their 35 minute set. 

Up next was the co-headliner, Mayday Parade. Following theme, they are a pop punk rock from Florida. The power pop five piece released their debut album "Tales Told By Dead Friends" back in 2006 and recieved some fair reviews. They have played slots on the Vans Warped Tour as well as a few small tours. They have had an interesting time lately with the departure of their former vocalist/lyricist/guitarist Jason Lancaster. However, they never let that slow them down, having Derek Sanders take over full vocalist duties in the lineup (he used to share the job with Lancaster). He's a great vocalist. All in all, I was impressed by their ability to connect with their audience. It sounds cheesy, but it really is an important art form that is often lost. If you like The Maine or Every Avenue, give them a listen.

Finally, the other co-headlining act and the reason for my attendance- The Academy Is. Stunning performance as always. Personally, I was really happy with the set as it was a lot of material from their album Almost Here, which is what drew me to them in the first place. They also played Sputter off their recent release, the Lost In Pacific Time EP. This song plays live beautifully. William Beckett's voice was flawless as always, accompanied by the trained musicianship of the band. No one was left sitting through this set. It was well worth the wait. I have recommended this band time and time again, so I wont bore you with the details... just give them a chance because you might love them as much as I do. If you want to know more about them, check out my earlier blog: The Academy Is...?

So props to Alternative Press for coming out with this tour to help these up and coming bands to find some fans. This was a good set of bands to take out, a lot of potential in the group for sure. I'll leave you with a couple pictures from the show.
All of these live (6) photos above taken by me....
top row=Mayday Parade
2nd row Mayday Parade and Set Your Goals
3rd row=Academy Is

Rock on!
- Girl At The Rock Show

Song of the Day: Ocean and Atlantic by Mayday Parade... I like this song (maybe because it involves my name? :P) Its also guaranteed to get stuck in your head.

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