GIG REVIEW: Tremonti & The Fallen State Live at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London
After announcing a string of UK and European tour dates in support of new album ‘A Dying Machine’ Tremonti, founded by Mark Tremonti from Grammy-nominated bands such as Creed and Alter Bridge arrived in London on 29th June 2018 at the historic O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire for a special night of pure thrash metal. He has a lucrative solo career behind him and with The Fallen State opening the night it’s bound to be brutal. Expect lots of soloing and serious pit action!
UK five piece The Fallen State kicked things off tonight with a punchy 45-minute support slot. Relatively, unknown to the Tremonti crowd, singer Ben Stenning knew exactly how to work pump the crowd never losing momentum. First song “Hope In Revival” was an instant hit with the rockers. The fast-paced energetic performance saw Stenning sing from the gut with Jon Price’s crushing riffs and stamping rhythm in “Sinner” was a crowd pleaser. The band showed that they are more than just your typical rock/metal band with their stunning performance of ballad “Nova.” The emotionally fuelled lyrics together with guitarist Price’s evocative solo captivated the crowd. This is probably one of my favourite tracks of theirs. Their exceptional performance ended with ”You Want It” which seriously heated things up in the pit as every head was banging and as I thought all we need is some serious mosh pit action Stenning led the crowd to squat and jump together! They knew how stir things up and make it more exciting. Their loud and dirty riffs built a growing buzz for what was about to happen.
The rowdy crowd became impatient as the changeover took over 30 minutes, but the frustration soon changed to excitement as they chanted “TRE-MON-TI, TRE-MON-TI” and finally the lights dimmed, the crowd roared as an overwhelming presence filled the arena, the Tremonti band entered the stage to the usual soundtrack opening and ploughed straight into an explosive performance of ”Brains” and suddenly the floor is bouncing and the room is rocking as shirtless moshers got the pit swirling and beer showering the crowd just two songs into the set. I’ve seen Alter Bridge a couple of times, but I’ve never seen such brutal pit action in one of these shows before. It was pure hysteria and a series of walls of death occurred for “Flying Monkeys” made it incredible.
Stepping out of the shadow of Alter Bridge we had the chance to witness Mark Tremonti in his element belting out hits from his extensive back catalogue, which appealed to all the fans old and new with the live debut of ”Traipse” and the old favourite “Dust.” Mark is no stranger to the stage as the frontman was all smiles as he stood proud and confident behind the mic. Fans are familiar with his rock-solid guitar playing skills, but his vocals really need to be commended as his delivery was flawless.
Additionally, the thunderous drumming by Garrett Whitlock and the screaming guitar solos by Eric Friedman blasted our aural receptors. Thrashy “Bringer of War” pumped the crowd even more with staggering, melodic offering and “Take you With Me” were all received as classics as they became mass sing-alongs. Myles Kennedy made an appearance acting as Tremonti’s guitar tech, the frenzied crowd shouted out for a duet, but tonight was all about Tremonti as Myles applauded the band as he walked off the stage. As fans know these guys don’t bother with an encore. They ploughed through the set warrior style leaving no time for rest and finished with “Wish You Well” with paper airplane set lists flying around the place.
Overall, headliner Tremonti delivered a blinder of a show featuring catchy hooks and pounding beats. Mark Tremonti showed immense affection for the crowd and his magnetic stage presence was undeniable. It is an unforgettable show! The Fallen State oozed style and substance with a passion for performance and it’s safe to say they’ve made their mark on the music scene by having the opportunity to support Tremonti- a huge achievement in their career. It’s essential you go and catch this tour in a city near you.