A familiar sight, a familiar place. It was where Avenged Sevenfold and Yellowcard had performed previously – The Coliseum at Sentosa – which has since featured a number of upcoming great acts, and tonight the spotlight is on the band that had an album titled “So Wrong, It’s Right”, which was an underground success.
All Time Low was all up and ready for some crazy action but not before our homegrown band by the name of Dropbeat Heartbeat had got the crowd just where they wanted them – out in front with voices united and singing along to their popular hits such as “Wherever You Go”, “Falling For Your Smile”, and Gettin’ Outta Here”. This will no doubt inspire them a ‘to and fro run of upcoming gigs’ in Singapore, and the band will also be making their first appearance at Baybeats this year.
Meaningful standards from the five-piece pop punk band, especially the vocalist who kept the crowds’ heartbeats pumping at full-force with his matching vocals of that Ryan Key’s vibrato from Yellowcard. The entire place was jumping tirelessly in anticipation for All Time Low to perform for their second concert in Singapore. Great stuff nevertheless, although surprisingly The Coliseum was only half-filled with few minutes to go till the American pop punk band wrecked the stage!
The night officially began as how usually gigs meant to start, with the boys from ATL stepping out from the sides of the stage and stationed themselves near the crowd, and opened with “Somewhere In Neverland” followed swiftly by “Forget About It”. Music is a drug and All Time Low is compelled to feed their addiction. The crowd knew “For Baltimore” was coming as Alex Gaskarth switched his guitar to clean and started singing, “Mayday, situation overload, I’m restless, obsessed with your future.” That was an exception in so many ways. The band was given such freedom, that songs like “Stella” and “Heroes” made them kings of the arena for a moment as they ran all over the stage. It was impossible for security not to splurge water on the dehydrated faces upfront when they should be looking out for crowd surfers or drunkards. Yet despite all that, few hooligans somehow emerged from the back of the crowd and were moshing their way to the front, which may or may not have been caused by “Coffee Shop Soundtrack”.
On another note, Jack Barakat appeared to be inebriated and was obviously being professional by making it oblivious – whether it was humping on the bassist’s back, initiating a flurry of air punches at Alex, or shaking hands with every band member after a song. “Perhaps the band should embark on a five-day stay here in Singapore every once a month”, well it clearly did the trick with the crowd putting their hands up high, right before they played “If These Sheets Were States” and “Jasey Rae” after.
It got me thinking that whether at rockstar level or in the music industry, contrary to what some people may argue, that being an awesome frontman of the band and moving the crowd at the same time still means something. In each case, acoustic pieces were invariably the best among of all the songs they’ve played so far. “We’re gonna play some slow songs so that you can make out with your girlfriend.” Alex was so sure about what he said, but sadly no one did. No one was gazing at their watches or counting down the time when “Remembering Sunday” was performed. Instead, the crowd was in awe, planting their ears onto Alex Gaskarth’s magical voice. It all prompts a question; when will the bras stop piling on the stage? Well, that was just a good sign of what’s to come.
As “Therapy” ensued, the crowd would be deprived of a happy ending, or so they thought. The band’s finest moment was when “Lost In Stereo” got their fans back to their feet once more, as they lost themselves in the music. It was really a lovely sight.
“Are there any guys who wanna give me bracelets or something?” Jack was babbling nonsense all this time and I can’t help myself laughing at everything he said or tried to say. I have to admit the boys themselves had sufficient time to redeem themselves by connecting with the crowd during their intervals. With “Backseat Serenade” and “Time-Bomb” signaling the end of their set, there were a few projectiles being hurled towards one another across The Coliseum, which went unnoticed. The throwing of light sticks towards the band however was disregarded, as it was funny. Different venues play a part in crowds’ behaviours as the boys from All Time Low ended their set with Alex, Jack, and Zack up front head-banging. But of course, the group’s band manager at the back was doing the backup vocals, whom I have to say, served as the silent worker throughout the night.
Rian Dawson on the drums was in beast mode for their encore, as the crowd practically had a heart attack of their lives with the band goofing around the stage as though it were a playground. International pop punk bands out there should employ ATL’s doodling and their playful showmanship at the center-stage because that’s how it should be done for all concerts. Their performance was top notch in that not only did they play one song for their encore, but three mighty songs altogether; and the band was so proud about it that Alex jokingly invited everyone to jump into the swimming pool nearby afterwards. “The Reckless And The Brave”, “Weightless”, and “Dear Maria, Count Me In” had been brilliantly played one step at a time as they sold their souls to the die-hard fans at The Coliseum. Clearly, they were capable of making it enthralling. It is one of the reasons why the band is moving in the right direction.
My strongest memory of All Time Low’s concert was of Alex Gaskarth, who made sure his performance stood out and was always talking to his bandmates, reminding them of what it meant to play for Singapore after their brilliant shows at the recent Soundwave Festival. In years to follow, it seems like the importance of chemistry within the band has been strongly raised and has been passed around all too regularly. All Time Low reinstated that and stamped their love onto our hearts. That little piece of intangible possession called passion still holds great importance, too.