Student Life Archives (2001-2008)

‘Pierce the Veil’ in Sauget, IL

Pierce the Veil

Loction: Pop’s in Sauget, IL
Date: Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Sound: 5/5
Energy: 5/5
Crowd Response: 4.5/5

It’s hard having a five-band show on a Wednesday night. Even putting noise-permit constraints aside, when the primary fan bases of all five acts hover around the age of 16, the show ends up having to start early so that the kiddos can still get a good night’s sleep for school the next day.

Thus, Cry of the Afflicted, the first of four bands opening for Emery, went on at 6:00 p.m., only playing to about 75 people, all of whom, including myself, seemed very much unimpressed.

At about 6:45 p.m., still incredibly early for a band to be going on, Pierce the Veil took the stage to a decidedly uninterested crowd. They opened with the first track from their debut as Pierce the Veil (the band has called themselves Before Today and prior to that the Early Times), “Chemical Kids and Mechanical Brides,” which began to get the crowd going.

With each song the crowd progressively became more receptive to Pierce the Veil, although it appeared most had never listened to them prior to the show. About halfway through their set of songs from their first album, “A Flair for the Dramatic,” Pierce the Veil busted out a completely un-ironic cover of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It.”

With “Beat It” everything changed. The crowd of 16-year-old scenesters seemingly threw away all prior inhibitions, singing and dancing along with their twist on a familiar track. A small pit broke out and the crowd finally let loose, allowing themselves to enjoy the incredible performance.

The standout song of the night was “I’d Rather Die Than Be Famous,” which highlighted Pierce the Veil’s onstage energy. Lead vocalist Vic Fuentes and backup vocalist Jaime Preciado were spot on the entire night. Lead guitarist Tony Perry added to their intensity by singing along to every word of every song, despite the fact that he was not miked. Synchronized body/guitar movements between Fuentes, Perry and Preciado also added an extra bit of (albeit corny) energy to the show. Finally, Mike Fuentes’s (yes, they’re brothers) pounding ferocity on drums guided the band throughout the entire night.

After seeing Pierce the Veil for the first time, I am absolutely convinced they are only shooting further and further into stardom. They have now toured with Emery, Scary Kids Scaring Kids, Chiodos and other screamo-scene superstars, which has surely helped gain them a fanbase. It’s nothing compared to what Warped Tour is about to do for them. If they put on the kind of performance they did at Pop’s in every major city in America, there’s no telling how far they’ll go.

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