Live: Stone Sour/Theory of a Deadman/Skillet/Halestorm/Art of Dying

RELIANT ARENA — 4/12/2011: The Avalanche Tour onslaught hit Houston April 12th. The Tour brought aboard The Art of Dying, Halestorm, Skillet, Theory of a Deadman, and Stone Sour.

I had never been to a show at Reliant Arena. It’s a pretty big venue, and I’d thought more Houstonians would have been there, considering that most of these bands are well-known and played on the radio. I was wrong, however — not many people were there, and half of them were sitting, so the crowd looked even smaller.

My friend Sarah and I arrived too late to catch the first set, The Art of Dying. Earlier this year they released their major label album, Vices and Virtues, and everyone around us talked about how good they had been. It really sucked that we got lost on our way there, because we missed a set that had everyone talking even after the next band went on stage.

We arrived just in time for Halestorm, and I have to admit, Lizzy Hale did a hell of a good job. Her voice and the instrumentals created a great blend. They were touring to support their self-titled CD and their EP, ReAnimate: The Covers. They performed their new single, “Bet U Wish U Had Me Back,” and even though I had never heard it, everyone else in the crowd shouted the lyrics at the top of their lungs.

Lizzy Hale being the attractive woman she is, she had the guys going crazy over her. When she announced they would be out in the hallway taking pictures with fans, every guy ran out. If you are a Halestorm fan, be prepared for their next album — they will be back in the studio very soon.

Tennessee Christian band Skillet went on stage next. I never knew that they were Christian before now, just like I didn’t know vocalist/bassist John Cooper was married to rhythm guitarist/keyboardist Korey. They put on a great show, and were one of the most welcomed bands that night.

The reason I was so surprised that they are a Christian band, by the way, is because of how successful they are in the mainstream industry; I would have to say that they are one of the most successful, well-known Christian bands. They put on a great show, and even though I’m not too familiar with them, I had a good time watching their set; they bring an amazing amount of energy to the stage. Great energy plus exploding dry ice geysers on stage adds up to a set that everyone goes bonkers over, especially when they played their hit “Monster.”

Theory of a Deadman was more than anticipated on stage. They performed their most popular songs — “So Happy,” “All or Nothing,” “Not Meant to Be,” “Hate My Life,” and “Bad Girlfriend,” with hits “Bad Girlfriend” and “Hate My Life” being the loudest of the night. Even the people sitting down got up to jump and scream. Theory of a Deadman also performed two new songs, “Low Life” and “Bitch Came Back.” Behind the powerful vocals of vocalist/guitarist Tyler Connolly, the band had the crowd shouting and singing every word to every song.

Seemed like after every band, the next one got better and better, and the openers definitely made it a challenge for headliners Stone Sour, fronted by one of the most well-known names in metal, Corey Taylor. The Slipknot frontman brought his very well-known, radio-played side project to Houston. It was such a surprise to me that Corey Taylor would transition from something like Slipknot, crazy and behind a mask, to Stone Sour, which is engaging, chill, and almost the opposite of the other band.

Being a Slipknot fan when I was younger made this experience a bit odd for me, but needless to say, Corey took the stage and owned it like he always has. I couldn’t help but picture him with a mask on; it’s so weird to see him like this, all clean-cut and not the Corey I loved. Just like the rest of the bands, who got better and better throughout the night, Stone Sour made the crowd go insane and played louder than any other band that night. Taylor’s stage presence was unmatched by anyone else earlier in the evening, as the band performed songs like “Get Inside” and the famous “Through Glass.”

The night ended with a crowd full of fans getting more than their money’s worth and showered with confetti. END

(Photos: Halestorm; Theory of a Deadman; Stone Sour; All photos by Ana Pacheco.)

Live review by . Live review posted Tuesday, June 21st, 2011. Filed under Features, Live Reviews.

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