[CONCERT REVIEW + GALLERY] THE WORLD IS A BEAUTIFUL PLACE AND I AM NO LONGER AFRAID TO DIE – 10/26/14

Although a Sunday night, downtown Baltimore venue ‘The Metro Gallery’ did not fail to draw in a steady crowd for the band from small town Connecticut; The World Is A Beautiful Place And I Am No Longer Afraid To Die. The group (more commonly referred to as The World Is or TWIABP) brought along all eight of their members as well as The Hotelier and Rozewell Kid for this fall tour running across the United States, being ever so kind as to let some Maryland hometown friends in Wish List to open up for this date of the tour.

The Maryland and Pennsylvania natives in ‘surf’ pop-punk band ‘Wish List’ were the first to take to the stage that night. It is not unusual to see many uninterested in an opening act, acting as thought it was just background music to occupy them while waiting for the headliner to take stage. But, with an advantage from playing a show so close to their hometown, the trio had many friends and fans alike in the crowd avidly watching the group perform their short, upbeat songs that remind you of something you would hear playing from a 90’s style boombox on the beach during a sunny day. It’s always refreshing to spend the first half hour of a show listening to a band that doesn’t sound utterly terrible, it would have been a pleasure for the remainder of the people going to attend this tour to start off their night with Wish List, but the rest of Baltimore should be thankful they got to watch such a talented band.

Next to take the stage, hailing from West Virginia, was Rozwell Kid. While ‘indie’ bands are infamous for members remaining idle during the duration of the set, Rozwell Kid really picked up the slack and there was not a moment when the group was still. From hair flips and lead singer knee slides to on stage interaction and and even off the stage interaction, Rozwell Kid kept your eyes moving. Aside from great stage presence, the band’s musical talent did not disappoint. On the more upbeat side of so-called ‘indie rock’ it was easy to see that Rozwell Kid were having fun, and no doubt the crowd did too.

As soon as The Hotelier started to play ‘An Introduction To The Album’ it was clear to see we had a crowd favorite on our hands. The quad from Massachusetts brought along a softer side of angst with tons of flowing lyrics and melodies. Even though the songs had less of a jumpy rhythm, Christian Holden’s aggressively powerful voice brought almost a unity among the concert-goers as they passionately sung back the lyrics. The Hotelier started their set just as strong as they finished it. The World Is definitely made a solid choice to bring them out on tour, a choice band to listen to while getting hype for the main act.

When a band whose amount of members is as large as their name is long, it’s hard to know what or who you’re supposed to concentrate on, but anyone who’s familiar with The World Is would have no problem to close their eyes and just listen to the multitude of sounds projecting from the stage. With a sixteen song setlist ranging from the new to the old the band was not one to fall short of amazing. Although not once lacking musically, the crowd response was a tad disappointing. For a headliner with such influential lyrics, massive crowd feedback is usually anticipated, but was nonexistent. As a photographer, shooting a show with no photo pit can sometimes be a struggle; so I was grateful to have space in the front to get my shots. But, I usually prepare for pushing and shoving as the show goes on, but it never occurred. The absence of crowd response made the show lack in enthusiasm. The “I’m too indie to act like I’m having fun” vibe came over the crowd. Luckily, it was not enough to deem the show unsuccessful. If you’re looking for a laid-back show for a cheap price, you’ve found the right tour.

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