Review – Circa Survive w/ The Deer Hunter @ Shrine Auditorium – Los Angeles, CA -12/28/13

Maria Gironas Jan 2nd, 2014 | By
Category: Circa Survive, Los Angeles, The Deer Hunter, Written Reviews

Review – Circa Survive w/ The Deer Hunter
@ Shrine Auditorium

I would just like to make a note for readers that if you are ever going to a concert at The Shrine, do not, I repeat, do not let your GPS tell you to turn on Jefferson, turn on 31st Street, it’ll save you 5 revolutions around The Shrine to find the parking structure.

After my brief quest to find parking, I walked from the structure to the lines filled with ripped pants and jean jackets the clothed the fans attending the last concert of the year for both The Deer Hunter and Circa Survive. Earlier, Circa Survive announced on Twitter that the concert would be filmed and recorded for their release of a live CD/DVD. To say I was excited was an understatement. I had forgotten the concert was GA and praised the baby Jesus up and down for unwittingly getting me to the concert an hour an half early, just before the real lines began.
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If I didn’t know I was going to a concert, I would have probably assumed I was going to Disneyland or TSA with the way security was checking bags and patting every person down. I only ever carry a wallet and phone in my pockets and the security lady stopped me and said straight into my eyes, “Young lady, are you doing drugs right now?” To which I politely responded, “No…” At first I was really offended that she asked, but I realized they were asking every person at that concert that question, so I was relieved at the fact my bright colored clothing wasn’t mistaken for a drug user.

It was my first time at The Shrine to which I awed at how large the venue was, it kind of looked like a cross between a ballroom and movie theater. Though the years have definitely worn down the shine of The Shrine, it didn’t take away from the legendary air within it. I usually try to get as close to the stage as possible, but when I saw it had a second story, I had to venture up and marvel at the stage and audience below. The crowd was very friendly and understanding, and I could hear them talking to each other about what tracks they were hoping to hear or wondering if they could get recorded into the DVD during the show. It was nice to feel the excitement from everyone and really established the energy for the crowd the entire night.

Opening was The Deer Hunter with mellow track “In Cauda Venenum”, which the crowd was excited about, but I couldn’t tell if people liked the track more than they liked that the concert finally started. Who knows? It wasn’t until the second song of the night “We Got A Score To Settle” really got the crowd going with many singing along and dancing to the dynamic lighting for the song as the drums banged out. My favorite song of their set was “Filth and Squalor Whisper”, their closing song for the evening.

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The drums beat like a heart and guitars felt like they were right next to you with how the reverb in the room played out. I also really liked how the song had these crisp bridges and dynamic, it wasn’t as apparent for their other songs of the night. It is definitely a given with such an open space, but the natural reverb in the room was really hurting the sound quality unless you we 10 feet from the stage. I wasn’t able to make out the vocals really well while the drums were heavy or when two or more guitars were milking their distortion pedals. The mix of the instruments didn’t seem to drown out the other though, which helped me know what point in the song we were in. Stage presence wise, you could tell they were in the groove, but I think they were nervous or something to really more around. At one point one of the band members said, “I think this is the biggest audience we’ve ever performed in front of.” They pretty much kept to their spots with the occasional leap to strong gesture with their guitar. Pretty good overall, just wished a little more out of their performance.

The Deer Hunter @ Shrine Auditorium Set List

  1. In Cauda Venenum
  2. We’ve Got a Score to Settle
  3. Echo
  4. Shame
  5. Shouting at the Rain
  6. Home
  7. Girl
  8. Filth and Squalor Whisper

Ah not the most anticipated act of the night, Circa Survive. For this, I decided to brave my mild case of claustrophobia to go on the bottom floor about 20 feet stage right. Everyone was so excited as one by one each member came out to take their spot with their instrument, and finally leader singer Anthony Green graced the stage. A slow drum beat began then Green began to sing “Sleep Underground.” Once the drums picked up the beat, everyone was dancing around and bobbing their heads singing along, almost like a choir. I was really feeling all the music, everything was flowing and Green has such a powerhouse stage presence that could rule countries. If that wasn’t good enough, I practically died when I saw Jeremy Bolm of Touch Amore come out for “Glass Arrows”, lending his voice to the track.

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They ended up playing 19 songs before they came back out for a four song encore, so a total of 23 for the night. I was pretty satisfied with the songs before, but all that was shot when the last song “Get Out” played. It stood out from the rest  and showcased the bands musicality as a whole. In retrospect I kind of wish more of the songs from the set were like that, but eh, I could live with it.

The sound was absolutely amazing, I couldn’t how different the quality was from the band before. Green’s voice was crystal clear and I even tested it by going back to my old spot to hear the difference. It was when I saw Green stop for a moment to breathe that I realized he had been singing to a backing track to compliment his vocals, a nice touch for the live DVD. The stage presence was undeniably more confident, with the four multi-colored panel lights and the band as a whole commanding the stage, performing like it was their last performance ever.

Overall, I went away from the show very happy. Not only did I get to appreciate two fantastic bands from an awesome venue, it was nice to be around fans that were so devoted. Some showed off their tattoos with the bands symbol and some brought their vinyls in hopes the band would have time to sign them after the show. I was an awesome night of music that I hope to appreciate again soon.

Circa Survive  @ Shrine Auditorium – Set List

  1. Sleep Underground
  2. Holding Someone’s Hair Back
  3. In the Morning and Amazing…
  4. Act Appalled
  5. Birth of the Economic Hit Man
  6. Sharp Practice
  7. Glass Arrows
  8. (with Jeremy Bolm)
  9. The Most Dangerous Commercials
  10. The Great Golden Baby
  11. The Glorious Nosebleed
  12. (with Tosin Abasi)
  13. Frozen Creek
  14. Suitcase
  15. Living Together
  16. Handshakes at Sunrise
  17. Dyed in the Wool
  18. In Fear and Faith
  19. Stop the Fuckin’ Car
  20. The Difference Between Medicine and Poison Is in the Dose
  21. House of Leaves Encore:
  22. Battle, My Love (Live debut)
  23. I Felt Free
  24. Lazarus
  25. Get Out
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