There is a saying that says that getting there is half the fun, which holds true for Slaves most recent tour for their new album, Beautiful Death. With an original release date of September 2017, a series of setbacks delayed the release and had fans waiting with bated breath until February 2018 for the first album from the band since 2015. While the wait was borderline excruciating for fans, it made the release and subsequent tour that much sweeter.
On February 23rd, a week to the day after the release of Beautiful Death, I headed to Greensboro, NC with Amped Sound editor Danielle Rhew to help celebrate the end of the waiting. They say that there is power in numbers, which applied perfectly to the show, having a total of 6 bands/performers playing in one night. With each band/performer came a different style than the last, which created not only a unique combination of sound but also a diverse selection of fans.
First up on the roster was Reflect//Refine who kicked off the show with a lot of power. With screaming vocals and heavy riffs, this act set up the tempo in which the rest of the show was to follow. Up next, Set For The Fall quickly changed the gears of the night by transitioning into Christian rock, definitely a surprising choice for the lineup.
Kyle Lucas then took the stage with a lot less setup than the other acts, as he required only a microphone and DJ setup. This performance, like the ones before it, also yanked the show in an entirely different direction with Lucas’s rapping and hip-hop beats. He did not fail to hype up the crowd, especially when Jonny Craig came onstage to join in on a song, reminding the concert goers of the performers to come. After Kyle Lucas, the show got back to its rock roots with Dayshell, the ex-Of Mice & Men vocalist Shayley Borguet lead band.
When Ghost Town took the stage next, there was a mix of excitement and impatience as the slowly-growing crowd anticipated Slaves long-awaited performance. Once Slaves took the stage, the room was abuzz with that sweet, sweet pleasure of finally reaching your destination after a long journey. Craig’s voice is just as magical, if not more, in person than through earbuds, which no doubt is a large portion of the allure of the band itself. With a setlist of both old and new songs, Slaves did a great job with respecting the old but celebrating the new.
With the show being so soon after the release of the album in which it was celebrating, there were some mixed expectations as to how to show would be. Would songs from the new album be praised as much as older ones? Would there be a decent number of fans showing support for such a long-awaited release? But all expectations set aside, this show turned out to be a success for all the bands involved, which goes to show that, as stated above waiting is truly half the fun.