We Came As Romans came and took it at Trees in Dallas.
When a band’s record becomes a tool or used as an assist to get you through a rough patch, you tend to hold onto it like a toddler holds a woobie (side note: if you happen to be adulting during one of these rough patches, you might hold onto the record in one hand and a bottle of Jack in the other…). Same is true about a song or an album that creates that instant mix of happiness or a certain time when everything was right as rain.
We Came As Romans have done that for their fans for the last ten years by providing from the grassroots beginnings, an incredibly vivid picture of personal or interpersonal experiences that are relatable to fans and the band members themselves on and off the stage. As the band released Cold Like War last October and singles were starting to rise in rank on the charts and on satellite radio, the fire that almost went to embers, got the air the flames needed to fuel them even more. Cold Like War is a masterpiece of music that not only defines Kyle Pavone (Keys/Synth), Andrew Glass (Bass), Eric Choi (Drums), Joshua Moore (Guitars), Brian “Lou” Cotton (Guitars), and Dave Stephens (Vocals) at a particular point in their lives, but the music on this record shows fans how dealing with or not dealing with challenges that all people face and how it affects their lives and the people around them.
So what makes a We Came As Romans show different than another rock show, this tour specifically? That’s pretty easy because although this is a headlining tour for WCAR, the features Sharptone Records labelmates Currents, Fearless Records labelmates Oceans Ate Alaska and The Plot In You, and Tempting Fate. And these bands carry a message that is in the same vein as WCAR. For fans of metalcore of this caliber, it is the display of emotions on stage that ties the laces tighter; keeping the shoe on the foot or the pairing of coping and reactions to life situations and using the music of these bands to foster these processes of growth or change.
With six bands on the bill, doors were at 6:00PM and the first band started at 6:20PM, Threnody a local band from Dallas, followed by Tempting Fate, Currents, Oceans Ate Alaska, The Plot In You and closing the show WCAR played for over an hour. Trees was packed tight with people upstairs and squeezed in like cheese in a can on the floor, upstairs in the balcony, and on either side of the venue. It might seem that a bill of this size would have the potential to last forever, but when you shuffle six bands on and off, having 20 and 30-minute sets, and 15 minute load times, it goes pretty fast.
If you’re in Dallas, there are tons of places to see bands, especially in Deep Ellum; an area a hop away from downtown Dallas, proper. This three street hub has a ton of places to see live music, but Trees has a long history not only of Dallas music but any touring band – large or small in the last 20 year (minus a few years the venue was closed, it reopened in 2009 under new ownership), has graced the stage at this iconic place for music to happen, grow, and return. (Google: Nirvana at Trees to see what a staple this venue has been in Dallas).
A concertgoer has to take a similar rite of passage that a band has to when playing in their hometown, watching live music. Concerts that make an audience look like buckets of water were poured on them the whole night, or forget that personal space really exists. Shows that reveal the most disgusting smells, create questionable sounds from a band never heard of, or hear a band that you won’t ever go see again, and those shows that connect people together that wouldn’t have connected otherwise; those are the shows that are seared in music fans’ memories forever. Those are the shows where people walk out feeling like they are part of something bigger than themselves. There are shows that leave an audience full of emotions and even somewhere they’ll never be the same again.
Metalcore fans felt this at the WCAR show at Trees in Dallas, TX Sunday night. The audience participated in every band’s set with pit action here and there, hands in the air, jumping up and down, and words sung along during every song. Emotions ran thick, just like the damp air from the heat of a close to sold-out show. The support bands brought it hard for fans and there wasn’t a time during the night when walking up to the front of the stage was an option. Yet, even at the back of the venue, WCAR and Company, made you feel like you were right there up close.
If you’ve never seen WCAR play live, you must – sooner than later. Dave Stephens does not stop with the exception of a small break in the middle of the set. And stopping doesn’t refer to him singing, it refers to him actually moving wildly around the stage. In all honesty, all six WCAR members are bouncing or flailing or jumping around while playing, for over an hour. Lou Cotton (guitars) bends in half, banging the upper part of his body and head probably a thousand times. Kyle Pavone (keys/synth/vocals) makes the journey to the front of the stage and back to his post at the keyboard for his vocal parts like a swinging pendulum and Joshua Moore (guitars) and Andrew Glass (bass) join in the energy that shook the whole house with jumps and fists in the air, as the crowd fed on the music and electricity coming off the stage. This all goes down while Eric Choi (drums) keeps the beats and rhythms of the songs with the slaps of his drums. It is really a sight to see all six members on stage, really.
We Came As Romans continue their headlining tour in support of Cold Like War which was released last October and continues to gain momentum with singles like the self-titled track “Cold Like War”, “Lost In The Moment”, and “Vultures With Clipped Wings”. If you haven’t purchased this record, you can do so through the band’s website or by visiting Sharptone Records. Remaining dates and cities the tour stops in can be seen on their social media pages or official websites.
Event Date: 25-MAR-2018