Words and photo by Sarah Hoffman
As Of Mice & Men geared up to take the stage at the sold out House of Blues in Houston, Texas, it was clear that most of the crowd was here to see the California natives light up the stage. I had the perfect view behind the soundboard, surrounded by a sea of passionate fans as the band came out in full force. Their presence created an energy throughout the whole venue that was palpable as the crowd jumped along from the very first beat to the end of the opening song “Bones Exposed” from their brand new album ‘Restoring Force’. Lead singer Austin Carlile completely owned the stage, easily putting him in the running for the title of “world’s best front man.” His interactions with the crowd and fantastic vocal performance, as well as the performance of lead clean vocalist Aaron Pauley, were absolutely on point and left almost nothing to be desired. The band chose a setlist that was the perfect mixture of old and new songs to please all fans, with the only downside being the shortness of their set that left the crowd begging for more. The crowd from the floor to the balcony never stopped moving, crowdsurfing, and singing along during the entire performance, but the song OG Loko received the greatest reaction that had the whole venue shaking. On the technical side of things, Of Mice & Men had one of the best light shows I have seen in a long time. The color scheme stayed true to that of their newest album and the theme of The American Dream Tour and was extremely aesthetically pleasing. Overall, Of Mice & Men’s short set was clearly a highlight of the tour which is really saying something when they are put up against bands like letlive., Issues, and Bring Me The Horizon. The band held their own to please the old fans as well as earn themselves a few new ones, myself included. If the American Dream Tour has yet to stop in your city, be sure to pick up a ticket because you’re in for a fantastic show. Check out the remaining dates of the tour below.
3/18 El Paso, TX – Tricky Falls
3/21 San Francisco, CA – Regency Grand Ballroom
3/24 Seattle, WA – Showbox at the Market
3/25 Vancouver, BC – Vogue Theater
3/26 Portland, OR – Roseland Theater
3/28 San Diego, CA – Soma