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Underoath's Disambiguation Tour at House of Blues Anaheim
Written by Melissa Garcia   
Friday, 28 January 2011 21:33

Underoath started its “Ø Disambiguation Tour” with openers; A Skylit Drive, Animals as Leaders, and Thursday (playing Full Collapse in its entirety.) This tour’s purpose it to promote Underoath’s new album, Ø (Disambiguation). The tour provides packaged deals that include a meet and greet with the band and a goodie bag full of Underoath merchandise. Only 30 packages will be sold for every date, and they sell fast. Not only is it to promote the new album but to commemorate Thursday’s album Full Collapse, and showcase bands that earned the right to tour with these hard rock veterans.

The House of Blues Anaheim, was a mismatch of hardcore fans and the hardcore fan’s girlfriends, who didn’t give as much as a nod at the bands performing. A Skylit Drive ignited the beginning of the Anaheim show. But the real treat of the night were Animals as Leaders. This pure instrumental band let the music speak for itself. We all know that words can be overrated, and this band proved just that. With the guitarist (Tosin Abasi) dressed in white, he displayed his milky smooth moves on the 8-string guitar. The drummer (Navene Koperweis ) was the brute force behind the vigorous set, and the rhythm guitarist (Javier Reyes) kept the raunchy distortion at a high.

The band has the slightly off-kilter feel of The Mars Volta and without screaming vocals theAnimals as Leaders had the challenge of keeping the crowd interested. Like Abasi’s unblemished solos, this was challenge was to no avail. When the mic was actually used Abasi took the time to poke fun at the Anaheim crowd, asking if they felt tough going to a hardcore show at Disneyland. “…It’s okay cause’ I’m not tough so I don’t care…” assured Abasi. I beg to differ; those guitar solos put me to my knees.

Thursday, with a fan base over 10 years in the making, had the crowd sweaty and ready for Underoath’s performance.  As Full Collapse (Thursday’s second studio album) took hold of airwaves in 2001, it also took hold of the Downtown Disney crowd with fierce energy. Performing were four original members; Geoff Rickly as lead vocals, drummer, Tucker Rule, guitarist, Tom Keeley, and Tim Payne on bass and a member since 2000, Steve Padulla on guitar/ backing vocals. Getting tossed around was a must when they took the stage. Fans threw themselves on the crowd hoping to get carried away, dedicated fans adorned tattoos of the band’s “Dove” logo and I head banged the night away. It was one of the most boisterous sets of the night, with an unrelenting nostalgia of the bands rise to success. They ended the set with a song off their latest album that expects an early 2011 release.(The name of the album hasn’t been released just yet.)

Underoath puts on ruggedly delightful performance not just for the ears but also for the eyes. Synchronized lights stood alongside, and behind the drummer which emphasized the double bass kicks and breakdowns. Spencer Chamberlain’s almost dreadlocked hair was swung across the stage. His expressive way of performing had the fans in a frenzy. He leaned into crowd close enough for your fingertips to touch the mic cord. Spencer wasn’t the only member expressing immense energy on stage. I didn’t realize how entertaining a keyboardist can be to watch until Christopher Dudley, (keyboard, synthesizer) rocked out to the point of neck injuries. (No he wasn’t really injured, but I’m sure his neck feels like hell today.)

The whole show was put on theatrically from the lighting, to the performer’s explosive stage presence. Underoath’s new album is a more dark and experimental sound for them, and was clearly portrayed in this performance. Ø (Disambiguation) received mixed reviews on their ‘less pop more rough’ transition, preceding the departure of the last original band mate, Aaron Gillespie (drummer, clean vocals.) Their new direction into a more edgy, underground hardcore scene might gain them some fans, while losing those who fell in love with their older sound. This tour is a great way to get feedback on this new path they are on as growing musicians. Expect a great show nonetheless. For those who like to be a part of the mosh crowd--schedule an hour long massage the day after the show, whether or not you want a happy ending is your decision… I know I did.

Thanks for reading, yours truly,


More pictures to come, for now, check out the gallery:


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