October 3rd The Plaza Live was provided a treat with a tour stop by Hollywood Undead with Butcher Babies and Demrick in support. Hollywood Undead was coming fresh off a tour stop from the Louder Than Life festival in Kentucky and continuing their tour of their new album ‘V’. The Plaza Live had a solid crowd waiting for the show to start as we all know this would be a solid show.
Demrick is a songwriter and artist originally from Philadelphia, PA. Starting off in 2005, Demrick collaborated with a number of different artists and released his own solo mix tape in 2008. In 2010 he was featured on the Cypress Hill album ‘Rise Up’. He’s continued to collaborate with other artists and released an EP titled ‘Neva Look Back’ in 2013. He’s continued collaborating with other artists releasing two other albums ‘Losing Focus’ in 2015 and ‘Collect Call’ in 2016.
When Demrick hit the stage the crowd applauded though seemed apprehensive. I assumed, like myself, we weren’t as familiar with his works. He came out and introduced himself and started into “Eyes Red”. Once he got started, the crowd and I were definitely impressed with his lyrical talent and performance on stage. He continued on with “Watch This” from his ‘Collect Call’ album. The crowd was definitely getting more and more into his performances as he continued on. Demrick is very charismatic on stage and was pulling in the crowd to his performance. He also performed “Hands Up” and “Otw”. Demrick offered fans the opportunity to meet him by the merchandise table after his performance.
Butcher Babies were up next and I was excited about this performance. The band formed in 2010 and released a self-titled EP in 2011. Their hardcore, energetic, thrash style caught the attention of metal fans immediately. Carla Harvey (vocals) and Heidi Shepherd (vocals) would hit the stage with reckless abandon inciting the crowd into a frenzy with their powerful vocals and music. The band produced 2 studio albums, 2 EPs, and a current studio album, ‘Lilith’, to be released this year on October 27th. Heidi, Carla, Henry Flury (guitars), Jason Klein (bass), and Chase Brickenden (drums) came out on stage to a roaring crowd.
They opened up with “Burn The Straw Man” from their new album ‘Lilith’. The song is what I love and expected from Butch Babies; hardcore music, screaming vocals, and energy that rips through the crowd. They followed up with the title track ‘Lilith’ from the new album. Though it is slightly different than the hardcore thrash we’re used to hearing, it is indeed a solid song making great use of Carla and Heidi’s vocals. They went back to older material playing “Monsters Ball” bringing back the sounded fans know and love.
They played a great mix of their songs throughout their set including “The Butcher”, “The Huntsman”, “POMONA (Shit Happens)”, and “Headspin”. Butcher Babies were having a lot of fun that night, though Carla and Heidi were disappointed the venue would not allow crowd surfing. Heidi at one point did come into the photo pit and stood on the barriers singing to the crowd. At the end of the evening, Heidi crossed over the barrier into the crowd and directed a circle pit around here. The crowd was happy to oblige and when the song was over she thanked the crowd and headed back to the stage. She also informed the crowd they would be in the lobby to meet up the fans after their set.
The headliners Hollywood Undead were getting ready to hit the stage. The band from Los Angeles, CA took the scene in 2005 and released their first studio album, ‘Swan Songs’, in 2008. They were an immediate hit with their unique style using rap and rock together. They released their second album, ‘Desperate Measures’, with a live DVD performance. The album made it into the Top 10 of the Billboard 200. They released two additional studio albums, which also had the same success. And now the band is on tour for their next album, ‘Five’, which will be released on October 27th. As the lights went down “J-Dog” (vocals), “Funny Man” (vocals), “Johnny 3 Tears” (vocals, bass), “Charlie Scene” (vocals, guitar), “Danny” (vocals, guitar), and session drummer, Tyler Mahurin, took the stage.
They opened up with “Whatever It Takes” from the new album ‘Five’. The song gave a vibe of more rap than rock that had a haunting sound behind it. The guys made their way around the stage sharing the vocals and engaging the crowd to get them to sing along. They followed up with “Usual Suspects” from their 2015 album ‘Day of the Dead’. This song had a little bit more of a rock beat and the crowd definitely knew the song singing along loudly. Next, they followed up with one of their most famous songs, “Undead”, from their first album ‘Swan Songs’. The crowd went crazy as soon as the music started and they were all dancing and bouncing. Hollywood Undead seem to appreciate it as the more crowd was involved the more animated they became on stage.
The best thing about seeing Hollywood Undead live is their interactions with the crowd and each other. They enjoy having fun on stage, joking around with one another, they enjoy playing up to the crowd and have a true appreciation for the opportunity to get them where they are today. Some of the other songs they performed that night included “California Dreaming”, “Gravity”, “War Child”, “Another Way Out”, and “Day of the Dead”. But, they did something I don’t think anyone expected that night. Hollywood Undead wanted to pay tribute to the late Tom Petty so they performed a cover of “Mary Jane’s Last Dance”. It was a surprising and very touching moment.
Overall, the crowd was very pleased with the show. A mix of rap, heavy metal and rap rock gave it a different feel for a concert, but one where everyone was pleased. Hollywood Undead, Butcher Babies, and Demrick are still on tour, so go check out one of the shows if they are coming to your area.