I’ve never been one to go out of my way to listen to Bullet for My Valentine. To be honest, I was actually kind of dreading their recent concert here in Grand Rapids. All I kept picturing were thousands of little teenagers jacked up on Monster and Red Bull, whining about how they would give anything to have just ONE cigarette.
While my vision for the evening, of all the little teeny boppers, turned out to be spot on, my judgment of how good the concert itself would be was far from accurate.
The show was sold out before I arrived, and Airbourne got the crowd alive and going crazy with their opening set. If you hadn’t known any better, you would’ve thought they were headlining from how big of a reaction they received from the audience. Chiodos followed, I never really heard much of the band before, but they put on a great show, and I was not disappointed.
I was quite impressed by the stage setup that Bullet for My Valentine had. They made it clear that they meant business and made it to the major leagues, and that they were no longer some high school garage band. When they took the stage, the crowd erupted; there were more people packed into the Orbit Room than I have ever seen before in the almost 15 years that I have been going to shows there. To say there was no place to stand would have been an understatement, yet somehow the concert goers managed to form a pretty decent mosh pit; I don’t think I saw an end to the crowd surfing the whole show through. Bullet opened strong with “Your Betrayal”, and “Fever”, and even stopped to thank the crowd to express how thrilled they were to be playing for a packed house. They finished up the night with “Alone” and “Hand of Blood”, which is actually the one Bullet song I really know well.
It was amazing to see so many people singing along to their songs. It reminded me of when I first started going to shows and why I love live shows so much in the first place. The energy and excitement you feel during a great show is something that is hard to express in words: you just have to be there. The night turned out far better than I could’ve expected. The crowd was cool, the bands were great, and more importantly, Bullet for My Valentine gained at least one new fan.