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Of Mice MenZeche, Bochum, Germany
16th August 2019
Of Mice & Men - European Tour 2019 - Special Guest: Bleed From Within

The history of the BAND OF MICE & MEN, founded in California in 2009, resembles a roller coaster ride of emotions and internal band tension. Not many formations look back on such a turbulent history in terms of style, line-up and internal conflicts. All this didn’t prevent the rock band between Post-Hardcore, Metalcore and Nu Metal, which only shrunk to a quartet at the end of last year, from a remarkable success in their home country.

Their third album, ‘Restoring Force’, released in 2014, climbed to number 4 in the US billboard charts and also recorded the greatest international successes in their career to date. The band then went on an almost endless world tour and released their fourth album ‘Cold World’ in September 2016, which also climbed into the top 20 of the US charts and at the same time marked the exit of their former singer Austin Carlile. January 2018 saw the release of ‘Defy’, the long announced first album without Carlile, whose frontman role is now taken over by bassist Aaron Pauley.


Bleed From Within

The Scottish metalcore combo from Glasgow were companying OF MICE & MEN on the European leg of their tour. The band formed back in 2005 as five teenagers came together in a Scottish youth club to cover LAMB OF GOD-songs. So far they have released four studio albums, with ‘Era’ from 2018 being the latest. https://www.bleedfromwithin.com / https://www.facebook.com/bleedfromwithinband

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Music & Performance
Ten minutes earlier than announced, at 7:20pm BLEED FROM WITHIN walked on stage and kicked off their set. Front man Scott Kennedy was visibly happy to open up for one of his personal heroes, and exuded lots of positive energy during the band’s set while revying up the audience. His boyish charm reminded me of Winston McCall from PARKWAY DRIVE minus the accent. The Zeche in Bochum was already pretty full, as BLEED FROM WITHIN made a captivating watch, with all three axemen moshing their impressively long hair in sync with the groove and delivering a technically flawless and advanced performance, which lasted forty minutes and earned the band a lot of cheers as well as new fans.

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As BLEED FROM WITHIN will also accompany ANY GIVEN DAY as special guest on their December “Overpower” tour, it is one good reason more to get yourself a ticket for the next scheduled gig in Oberhausen at the Turbinenhalle on Dec. 22nd 2019.

Setlist
01. Afterlife
02. Cast Down
03. Uprising
04. Crown of Misery
05. Bed of Snakes
06. Alone in the Sun
07. Ruina
08. Alive

Rating
Music: 9
Performance: 7
Sound: 8
Light: 7
Total: 7.8 / 10

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Of Mice And Men

The Metalcore band OF MICE & MEN from Costa Mesa, California is one of those phenomena where it seems to take ages for their popularity to cross the Atlantic. Similar to the early days of KORN, who initially suffered a similar fate, they enjoy a substantial fan base in the U.S., having sold over 15 million copies since their formation in 2009. In Europe however, things seem to need more time. Nevertheless, the band touring through Europe should help them immensely to establish a growing fan base on this side of the Atlantic. This will be helped by the record ‘EARTHANDSKY’, which is scheduled for end of September. To find out more about the band, check out www.ofmiceandmenofficial.com or https://www.facebook.com/ofmice.

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Music & Performance
Shortly after 8:30pm, the stage lights started flashing in red and some alarm sounds announced the arrival of the band members. The audience formed a giant circle pit in anticipation of the mayhem to come, and everyone in the front of stage area rushed in, once the band kicked off their set with ‘Warzone’ from their most recent record ‘Defy’. OF MICE & MEN did the impossible, they were able to raise the temperature inside the room once again by a few degrees. In terms of song choices, the set list weighed heavily on the most recent album. All these songs were embraced by the fans indulging in their sweat-heavy game of moshing and forming circle pits. OF MICE & MEN put on a hell of a show, and front man Aaron - freed from the double duty of playing bass and vocals, as Raad Soudani took over bass guitar - upped his stage game a few notches.

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The only downside of the concert was probably that after barely 50 minutes of playtime and just 11 songs, the band left the stage saying Good Night and all. They could be brought back by clapping and whistling for the encore, but after three more songs the virtual curtain fell, bringing the total playing lengths to just over an hour. This is just too short for a headliner for my liking, especially, as OF MICE & MEN have the necessary breadth and depths in terms of song material from their previous four albums. So many good songs such as ‘Second & Sebring’, ‘Relentless’, or even ‘Back to Me’ from the new album were left unplayed. On a positive note, OF MICE & MEN with BLEED FROM WITHIN brought along a Class A support act, which certainly deserve to be added to your media library.

Setlist
01. Warzone
02. Defy
03. Would You Still Be There
04. Earth & Sky
05. How to Survive
06. O.G. Loko
07. Unbreakable
08. On the Inside
09. Mushroom Cloud
10. Bones Exposed
11. Instincts
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12. Pain
13. You Make Me Sick
14. The Depths

Rating
Music: 9
Performance: 9
Sound: 8
Light: 8
Total: 8.5 / 10

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All Pictures by Tanja Schilling
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