Black Veil Brides
Best Buy Theater, New York, NY
January 25, 2013
Concert Review: Black Veil Brides at Best Buy Theater
Mix one part show and one part substance together and you’re left with a mesmerizing musical spectacle. The iconic imagery of a Kiss concert and the style of glam made famous by Motley Crue foreshadowed the combination that sold out every seat of the Best Buy Theater Friday night. Hollywood’s Black Veil Brides may have grown from a buzz generated through some historic t-shirt sales at Hot Topic, which their core fanbase of teenage girls would seem to indicate, but after landing a record deal, the band’s meticulously crafted live show plays as a showcase for what the band does best- a riotous stage show full of pomp and circumstance.
You might recall the LocalBozo.com crew grabbing a few minutes to chat with Black Veil Brides’ frontman Andy Biersack at the listening party for the band’s latest release “Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones” (January 8). At the time, we called the nineteen song effort the band’s ‘most complex and rewarding album to date,’ and the new tracks were on full display in front of the passionate sold out New York City crowd on this night. Songs like “I Am Bulletproof,” “Wretched and Divine,” “Shadows Die,” and a captivating version of “Nobody’s Hero” blended in well among some of their more familiar hits from previous albums. Biersack, ever the enigmatic frontman, paraded to and fro across the stage in torn clothing, his long hair bouncing all around his exposed tattoos. Time and again as the spotlight shone upon his face, he took a brief pause to flash a smile toward his army of young fans- many of whom, overwhelmed by the emotion of the moment, openly wept as they watched their favorite band rip it up on stage.
The frontman’s voice was raspy enough when addressing the crowd that we questioned whether he’d be able to effectively perform on this night. Disproving any skepticism, songs like “God Bless You” and “Youth and Whiskey” showed our cynicism was shortsighted, highlighting the vocalist’s talents in leading this band, while talented drummer Christian “CC” Coma paced each song excellently on the skins, despite being in the background for much of the show. Upfront however, the rest of the band embraced being up front and center as guitarists Jake Pitts, Jinxx, and bass player Ashley Purdy alternated different positions on the risers in front of the band’s stage set- each donning facepaint and eccentricities rivaled only by the sea of fans crushing the front barricade in an effort to get closer to the group.
As Black Veil Brides neared the end of their set, despondent fans opted to amplify their energy even further with crowd surfers piling over the front barricade repeatedly. Familiar radio friendly tracks like set closer “Fallen Angels” and the encore performance of “In The End” brought an already excitable collective crowd to even greater heights of aggression. The two songs, led by anthemic crowd backed vocals played like a rallying cry as we all approached the cold New York City night that awaited us outside just minutes later. But for ninety solid minutes, many of us now sweaty, with facepaint running down our faces, had witnessed a rock explosion somewhere in a middle ground between some of the most legendary performers and musicians that paved the way for as flashy a stage show. And while Black Veil Brides may not necessarily be at that level yet, they certainly appear to be well on their way.
- Jane Van Arsdale