Note: Random picture found on Google. Do not know who to credit.
When Pierce the Veil announced their Collide With the Sky tour over the summer, I went to work that day and immediately requested off for November 6th. I don’t fuck around with this shit. I also bought my tickets at the exact moment they went on sale because I knew they would sell out (Pierce the Veil alone could sell out a show, but when you add Sleeping with Sirens to the lineup, you can bet it’s going to sell out even faster).
And it did sell out. Like, within a few days. That’s a pretty big deal for a band in this scene!
As luck would have it, this show happened to be the night after one of the worst days I’ve ever had at work. Perfect timing. Nothing brings me back to my zone quite like a show at Mr. Small’s. And Pierce the Veil is one of my 5 favorite bands.
My co-workers are usually pretty ambivalent about the shows I go to, but apparently “piercing the corporate veil” is some legal thing so some of them were all excited about it. God, don’t ruin my moment with your lawyerly jargon!
Henry’s favorite activity: being the token Old in a forest of Youngs.
Typically, I always stand in the same place at Mr. Small’s – right against the barrier inside the 21+ area. However, Henry found out that the balcony area was free for that show (generally they require a $30 bar tab). At first, I was like, “Fuck off, old man. I’m in my spot.”
But Henry wasn’t feeling well. And everything he’s done for me over the last week alone was psychically dangled in front of my nose by God Himself, so I put down my guns and followed him upstairs. But don’t think I didn’t make him feel like shit about it! I sat down and immediately sulked.
“I’m in Old Person Hell!” I hissed through gritted teeth. Henry just laughed and made himself comfortable amongst all the other PARENTS.
(The view was superior though, I can’t deny that.)
Right before the show started, I felt a hand on my back. It was my old high school buddy, Rocky! His daughter wouldn’t let him be anywhere near her, so he was banished to Parentville and ended up hanging out with us.
Fuck, that show made me feel so old!
The Australian band Hands Like Houses opened the show and they were pretty much as wonderful as I expected them to be, though I was a little disappointed when Jonny Craig never walked on stage. (He sings on one of their songs, and also one of Pierce the Veil’s, so how convenient would that have been!? It’s not like he’s doing anything other than posting disgusting pictures on Instagram of making out with his plain “fiance.”) Pretty much every member of the band could be distinguished by one hirsute accessory or another, such as a bushy moustache, hair helmet or a caveman pony tail. And the singer was everything I wanted him to be. God, what a hot fucking band.
(Pretty sure I posted this on here a long time ago, oh wells.)
Rocky, after mocking me when I told him they were from Australia by saying, “Oh, well that MUST be good then!”, agreed that they were indeed a good band. So there.
Second band was Tonight Alive, another troupe of Aussies, but this one is led by a chick singer. I am super picky with female-fronted bands. Maybe it’s because Hayley Williams (Paramore) stormed onto the scene and totally raised the bar to dizzying heights. It’s hard not to hold every up-and-coming girl singer to those standards. Is it fair? No. But I can’t help it. It takes a lot for girl voices to impress me.
Tonight Alive is a good band. I felt no aversion to their music and have nothing bad to say. Henry, however, was hyper-critical. I thought he was actually comatose up until this point because he literally wasn’t talking or moving at all.
Here is what Henry says about Tonight Alive:
- “She dances like Gwen Stefani. I don’t like it.”
- “I’m sorry, but I don’t think any band can make that Mumford & Sons song sound good.”
God Henry, start a blog, why dontcha.
This actually makes me want to buy their album now. JUST TO SPITE HENRY.
And then there was Sleeping With Sirens.
How do I explain this band to someone who doesn’t know.
Their singer is, to borrow my friend Jason’s comparison, kind of like the scene kid’s answer to Justin Timberlake. High-pitched voice. Charming good looks. Stylish. Girls fucking love this kid. When I started listening to them in 2010, after the release of their first album, no one really ever talked about them. They were never in Alternative Press. They were never on Warped Tour. But somehow, something happened. Girls began figuring out what Kellin looks like? I don’t know. He’s too girly-looking, if you ask me, but he makes bitches faint, from what I hear. Their shit has blown the fuck up over the last two years. They’re a huge part of the reason why this show sold out, I know it.
I have never met Kellin Quinn, nor do I have any desire to. He just seems like some pretentious rich kid, you can just tell. In between songs, a group of girls got his attention.
“What? Someone passed out? Oh. I thought you were just being typical little girls and screaming like you little girls do. But apparently someone passed out.” And the way he said it was was so fucking ingenuine and cocky, like he was bored to death being on that stage. So while the person who passed out was being attended to, the rest of the band just kind of stood around on stage while Kellin used that as his opportunity to make disparaging remarks about the election and promote voting apathy to the hundreds of kids in front of him, some of whom might have actually been able to vote in this election. Totally turned me off.
And he’s not a very good live singer. But the rest of the band was awesome. And they ended with the song that Henry and I are going to pretend dance to at our imaginary never-wedding, so that was presh.
But who cares, because Pierce the Veil came on next and blew my memory of the rest of the bands right out of my head. I haven’t seen them headline a show since 2008. TWO THOUSAND AND EIGHT. It’s just been all Warped Tour sets in the meantime. They’re on their third album now, so they had plenty to play and I was happy with every last song. They even played one of my all-time favorite PTV songs, “Besitos.” I gripped Henry’s when Vic said they were going to play it, but Henry did what he always does and shrugged me off him.
Ugh, they’re my favorite Mexicans.
Kellin Quinn does guest vocals on Pierce the Veil’s “King For a Day,” so we figured it was a no-brainer that Kellin would back on stage for that one. (Yes, even Old Man Hank was speculating.) This happened at Warped Tour (the crowd almost masticated the stage when it did) and YouTube is stuffed with videos of Kellin’s cameo from this tour. But Pittsburgh wasn’t that lucky.
“Vic probably hates him,” Henry said, Scene Dad that he is. I agreed that he probably wasn’t wrong. Kellin or no Kellin, nothing was going to ruin that show.
I think I love this band so much because they encompass so many elements that pander to me. Vic is a lyrical genius. I don’t give a shit what anyone says. He could write circles around any of your little John Mayers out there on the radio. There is the perfect amount of screaming/heaviness to their sound that satisfies my aggro side, but the softness is still there too. While they sound nothing like The Cure, I’ve always felt their dark, oft-morbid themes are a nod to the goth kings. (The Cure is my favorite band of all time, so that’s really saying something.)
I always point my finger in Henry’s face during the “without you there is no me” part. I guess he thinks that’s more annoying than romantic, but whatever.
There were several times during the show that I gave up and let myself silently cry, especially during “Yeah Boy and Doll Face,” which was mostly acoustic and broke whatever was left of my heart. If you’re only going to watch video on this post, watch this one. :(
In that moment, a million memories of the Heaven and Hell that was 2008 rendered me breathless. I know, I’m the poster-mom for the emo movement. I get it.
On the way to the car, Henry asked me if I was alright. I started to say, “I just think they’re so perfect,” when the dam broke and I started sobbing. Henry just sighed. This has been his normal for the last 11 years of going to shows with me.
Pierce the Veil is like a warm blanket for my soul and I guess I didn’t realize how freezing I was until that night. Sometimes I feel like if not for nights like this, I might be a serial killer or sucking dick for crack under a bridge. Or worse: dead. Fuck drugs. Fuck money. Fuck therapy. Music is everything.
I really needed that night.