Nothing More Bring Unique, Energy-Packed Show to Los Angeles
As 2014 began, the buzz was starting to build for Nothing More. Fast forward to September 2014 and the group is enjoying what you could call a well-deserved victory lap in support of their self-titled release. The band's latest stop came Wednesday night (Sept. 3) at West Hollywood's legendary Troubadour, with Nothing More delivering an electrifying set and cracking the tough nut that is Los Angeles concert crowds.
The band entered with a spotlight clearly shining on an extra drum kit at the front of the stage that would play a significant role as the night moved on. The extra kit not only allowed frontman Jonny Hawkins to accentuate the percussion of drummer Paul O'Brien, but it also served as a platform for Hawkins to get a better look at the crowd and guide them into a frenzy throughout the night.
From the opening moments of 'Christ Copyright,' it was clear that this was going to be an energy-packed show. Flanked by guitarist Mark Vollelunga and bassist Daniel Oliver, Hawkins and his cohorts brought a live wire vibe to the show as if every beat and heavy lick was felt through his body.
The set really started to gain momentum with the low-end heavy 'Sixty Second Affair,' but things took a unique turn when the band provided a bass solo. However, this was no ordinary bass solo as an apparatus known as the bassinator allowed Oliver to strap in his instrument while he, Hawkins and Vollelunga took turns playing the bass with a slide, drum sticks and some nimble scale work, while also flipping it 360 degrees and swinging it to get some wicked distortion.
With the audience fully engaged, the band offered a thank you to their fans and their Eleven Seven Records label before delving into the song that broke them to the masses, 'This Is the Time (Ballast).'
Other highlights from the set included such standouts as 'First Punch,' the haunting rocker 'I'll Be Okay' and the epic set closing 'Salem' that featured all four of the band members providing pure percussive bliss with some drum acrobatics and hard hitting solos. The group then returned for an encore of 'Sex and Lies' that capped the night off on a high note.
Prior to Nothing More, the audience rocked out with opening act Sleepwave, who have an air of the next big buzz band about them. The group, on a high from just getting their first physical copies of the 'Broken Compass' disc in hand a few hours earlier, delivered an inspired set.
Sleepwave features former Underoath frontman Spencer Chamberlain, who also remarked how special it was to be back in Los Angeles after Underoath did not make it to town on their final tour. Chamberlain was a demonstrative presence onstage, commanding the audience's attention as his band began to win over the crowd with such standouts as 'Paper Planes' (not the M.I.A. song) and the recently released single 'Through the Looking Glass.' Look for Sleepwave's 'Broken Compass' in stores Sept. 16.
To see the remaining dates of the Nothing More / Sleepwave trek, as well as Nothing More's upcoming dates with Five Finger Death Punch, Volbeat and Hellyeah, click here.