When you don’t know what to expect from a band and a powerful storm takes the stage it is easy to get swept away. That is how I felt from the moment Ume played their first chord till Circa Survive’s final encore song. It was a night of pure rockness that had me entranced.
It was clear that the crowd wasn’t entirely prepared for the frenzy that was Ume’s performance. When Lauren Larsen came on stage to assist with the soundcheck I heard various comments around me such as “She’s cute but I’ll judge her on her music”. She appears to be a sweet, soft-spoken blonde. Then the lights went down and on stage came the trio from Austin, Texas, Ume. Within seconds the powerful, thrashy music began and Lauren became a blur of flying blonde hair and paisley fabric. It was immediately clear, this girl is a rockstar. There was never a dull moment. During the very first song Larsen dropped to the floor and went crazy on her guitar, an act she repeated several times through out the show. Anthony Green, who was watching the show from the side of the stage, even seemed to be amused by her on stage antics. At one point Larsen sent her guitar crowd surfing. When it was returned to her she promptly turned around and threw it to the floor. Green removed the guitar from the stage and had a look of astonishment as he looked the guitar over. By the end of their set the crowd seemed to be in love. I know I was. When the last note was played Larsen stood up and looked at the crowd and just smiled. She hugged her guitar while the crowd reached out to shake her hand. She gladly shook every hand that she could.
Where to begin with Circa Survive. I have seen these boys play several times and their energy never ceases to amaze me. Anthony Green is an entertainer and you can tell he loves every second of what he does. The moment they came on stage the crowd surge to the front began. During their opening song, The Lottery, I was crushed and probably not standing on my own two feet, but I didn’t care. I was somewhat relieved when half way through the set my memory card on my camera became full. It meant I could stop working and enjoy the show. Although, I wished I hadn’t been stuck with my camera bag because I wanted to jump into the pit and become a hot, sweaty mess with the rest of the crowd. When a show has that much energy I find it very difficult to not want to be part of it and get lost in the excitement.
During the majority of the show hands were in the air grabbing for Green, who spent a good portion of the show holding on to those fans hands as he sang. Crowd surfers landed on stage. Some ran to Green and tried to hug him, others just ran around the stage and danced. And every time Anthony Green regarded these fans with a look of tolerance out of love and would tell them “fly little puppy, fly”. He consistently referred to the fans in pet names such as little puppy, my piggies and chickens. At on point he pulled a fan onto the stage and instructed him to do interpretive dance to the following song. The crowd ate it up. Circa played one new song and when introducing the song Green said “I want you stand very still, hold in all of your wiggles until I give you the signal. When I give you the signal let all of your wiggles out.” It was during this song that I was struck with how impressive Green’s vocal really are. After an hour of running around stage he could still belt it out and be in key and not even be slightly out of breath. When I thought I had seen the extent of Circa Survive’s on stage insanity, crazy Anthony Green, and I say this with so much love, crawls across the top of the crowd, climbs up the balcony, then dives back down onto the crowd and crowd surfs back to the stage. It doesn’t get more rockstar than that.
It was a night of intensive energy. Ume began the excitement, setting the stage for Circa Survive to blow it away. The two bands complimented each other in ways that I haven’t seen in a line up in a while. It is an amazing experience for a fan when bands truly love what they do and you can see it in their performance. This was true for both Ume and Circa Survive. I haven’t had this much fun at a show in a very long time. I walked away sweaty, exhausted and with a giant smile on my face.
Article by: Chrissy Lush