Halestorm – Alexandra Palace, London

Halestorm ended the UK leg of their Europe and UK tour with an amazing headlining show at the iconic Ally Pally.

Following their sold-out show at the o2 Brixton earlier this year, the American hard-rock band comprising the siblings vocalist Lzzy and drummer Arejay Hale, guitarist Joe Hottinger and bassist Josh Smith announced some more shows in autumn, bringing along their friends in New Years Day and In This Moment. The quartet just released their deeply honest and personal fourth full-length album ‘Vicious’ (Atlantic Records) in 2018 and is known for encouraging their ‘Freaks’ (collective of followers) to be unapologetically themselves. Lyrically, Lzzy writes about her struggles with self-doubt and depression, but also to encourage herself and everyone else to accept and love themselves the way they are. Musically, the band add a unique vibe and dynamic to each song, mixing heavy guitar riffs with anthemic melodies and rhythmic drumbeats. Especially Lzzy’s massive vocal range is impressive, seamlessly switching between both soft and roughly screamed tones up and down the scale.

The doors of the Alexandra Palace (Ally Pally) opened around 7pm letting the excitedly waiting fans quickly fill the space in front of the stage. First band of the evening was the American rock band New Years Day comprising vocalist Ash Costello, bot guitarist Nikki Misery and Austin Ingerman, as well as bassist Frankie Sil just released their fourth album ‘Unbreakable’ (Another Century) earlier in 2019 and mixes elements from gothic metal, hard rock, post-hardcore and alternative metal. The quartet captured the crowd’s attention right from the start and got them warmed up for the next band of the evening.

In This Moment, an American alternative metal band comprising vocalist Maria Brink, bassist Travis Johnson, drummer Kent Diimmel as well as both guitarists Chris Howorth and Randy Weitzel, show influences of gothic metal, metalcore and alternative metal, adding elements of alternative rock, industrial and electronica. Maria Brink’s distinct voice seamlessly switches between singing and shouting while dancing across the stage. Their theatrical setup got the crowd hooked right from the start. Everyone was singing the lyrics back to the stage, especially when the band introduced their set closer ‘Whore’.

After a short break to pack down In This Moment’s stage equipment the light s turned off and the first riffs of ‘Do Not Disturb’ rang through the venue everyone was off their feet and screamed the lyrics back to the stage. Halestorm played a good mix of all their releases including ‘Love Bites (So Do I)’, ‘Mz. Hyde’, ‘I Get Off’, ‘Black Vultures’, a rendition of ‘Familiar Taste of Poison’ leading into ‘Amen’, ‘Freak Like Me’, ‘Killing Ourselves To Live’, ‘Uncomfortable’ and ‘Chemicals’ before finishing the first part of the set with ‘I Am The Fire’. Of course, Arejay improvised one of his impressive drum solos, following a battle with bassist Josh Smith. After leaving the stage and the fans screaming for more songs, Lzzy came back onstage to play an acoustic medley starting with ‘Rock Show’, followed by ‘White Dress’, ‘Dear Daughter’ and a rendition of Whitney Huston’s ‘I Will Always Love You’. The night ended with the band inviting the other bands on stage for ‘Here’s To Us’ and then finishing off with ‘I Miss The Misery’. All band members gave their best and seemed to have an incredible time jamming and improvising between songs which shows their talent and craft as musicians. Lzzy’s voice was on point and never fails to impress as she makes it sound effortless to reach the high notes.

Overall, it was an amazing evening with incredible musicians, great music and an energetic audience who seemed to have a special time. Not only the bands on stage but also the fans enjoyed themselves singing and dancing along which was highly appreciated by the bands.

Venue: Alexandra Palace

Band: Halestorm

Support: New Years Day, In This Moment

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