Last week we trekked out to Baltimore to catch the Divisi tour, headlined by A Lot Like Birds with support from Household, Owel, Hearts Like Lions and Baltimore locals, WVNDER. I got some awesome shots and even got to talk to and snap some photos with the bands outside the venue. Check it out!
The show opened up with local band WVNDER. I had actually heard of these guys and listened to their most recent album quite a bit, so I was excited to see how our local fresh talent held up live. Put simply, WVNDER is fantastic live. What they lacked in a live bassist, they made up for with spot on harmonies, guitar riffs, and drum parts. Vocalist Andy Cizek flawlessly belted his high notes (which are pretty high, I might add) while stomping his own personal vocal pedalboard. Keep an eye out for WVNDER and don’t miss them if you have the chance.
Hearts Like Lions
Hearts Like Lions was my surprise of the night. I wasn’t sure what to expect from them, since I hadn’t heard their music before, but I very quickly found myself nodding my head to every song. By being impressive but not overly technical, they allow themselves to have great, expressive, stage presence. Their sound is a lot like A Lot Like Birds, and they’re a perfect match for the tour. I’ve been listening to their music since the show, and they almost perfectly represented their album recordings. They made more than a few Baltimore fans that night and plenty more throughout the rest of the tour.
OWEL was next up, and honestly this is who I was here to see. I caught wind of their album “Dear Me” and it quickly entered my top 5 of 2016. They display a level of musicality and innovation in sound that is pretty hard to find these days, so I was pumped to see them live. They absolutely did not disappoint. Speaking as someone who has listened to their latest album back and forth, it was literally a perfect performance. I couldn’t have asked for a single thing other than a longer set and a bigger stage. Every note was executed with perfect tonality, tempo and dynamics. They were the only band on this tour that brought their own lighting and it just enhanced their set that much more. If you have a chance to, please go see OWEL live and then buy their album Dear Me, for your own sake.
Compared to the rest of the bands on this ticket, Household is pretty different. With less attention to melodics and more of a heavy-handed approach, it’s clear they were the black sheep of the tour. In regards to performance they brought plenty of energy and performed their songs well, but it was definitely pretty jarring for them to follow OWEL. I would’ve liked to see the order of these two reversed, as, stylistically OWEL would’ve flowed much better into A Lot Like Bird’s Set. Other than that, Household was great, just a little out of place.
A Lot Like Birds
These guys are literal show stoppers. The amount of raw emotion that they leave on stage is incredible. I hadn’t listened to the entire Divisi album before that night, but you can bet I was blasting it on the way home. Musically they’ve written beautiful material and it shines on the record. Vocalist Cory Lockwood struggled with some high notes. I noticed during For Shelly, their second song of the night, and it carried throughout. He replaced it with some screams, and that worked perfectly. However, I know tours are extremely difficult and taxing so I don’t count it against him. Especially since everything else was nigh spotless. Everyone did their job tonally, dynamically, and in perfect time, and it was beautiful. Visually, they really lacked in the production side of things, bringing only their huge banner. That doesn’t make the entire show, but it sets the tone, and when they just let the venue blare ugly blue and Red lights the entire show, it sets the tone that you don’t care about the visual side of things, which can mean way more to the overal performance. It is definitely worth it to get out to whatever venue their at if you’re a fan, and bring a friend, they’ll have no choice but to love all the bands on this tour.