Date of Show: 8/22/18
A Review of The Funeral Portrait’s show at Stamps the Bar in Tonawanda, NY.
By: Chandler Poczciwinski
Above: Lee Jennings (The Funeral Portrait)
Nestled right in the quiet town of Tonawanda, Stamps the Bar was home of the festivities for the evening. The line-up for the evening consisted of: Of Night and Light (Buffalo, NY), Fall of Icarus (Medina, NY), Signs (Of a Slumbering Beast) (Buffalo, NY), Assume Nothing (Mason, MI), and The Funeral Portrait (Atlanta, Ga). This would be a great night as I was familiar with two of the four bands, and had seen both of them live before, and was excited to see them again. I arrived during the beginning of Of Night and Lights set, and after walking in I instantly whipped out my camera and got to work. I had been especially excited to see Of Night and Light that evening, as they are definitely one of the emerging bands coming out of Buffalo right now. I saw them at the WNY Korner Stage during this year’s Vans Warped Tour in Buffalo and they were actually the ones to tell me about this show. I have also seen them around the Buffalo music scene quite a bit for the past few years and I always love to support the home town Buffalo boys. Of Night and Light is a three-person line up however you didn’t hear any emptiness from the lack of a second guitar player because bass player/backing vocalist Cameron Thibault did a very nice job of filling out the sound. To be honest ONAL sounded heavier than I remember from the first time I saw them, but to me that’s a good and not a bad thing. My favorite song of their set would be their second to last song titled Hope, it is slower and softer than their normal material however, it provided some very nice dynamics to their set. Of Night and Light definitely did not disappoint, and I can’t wait to see what is coming for them next.
Above: Of Night and Light
Above: Joseph Kinem (Of Night And Light)
Up second would be Fall of Icarus, and with them they brought a sound that sounds like skate core and metal core had a baby. Their fast and heavy guitar parts, accompanied by their heavy vocals would give the crowd a real treat. In the future, I would love to see them on more strictly hardcore line up because I think they would have a great crowd response from the hardcore community.
Third was the duo, Signs (Of a Slumbering Best). What I really took away from their set was its structure. They took an interesting route that had a lot of transition focusing most on lead singer Chris Oliveras. This was a nice change from the normal “song, break, song, break” that you hear from most bands. Vocally, Oliveras brought the metal core heaviness while adding touches of pop punk. Overall, Signs (Of a Slumbering Beast) brought a mold breaking sound and set to the show that was refreshing.
Above: Chris Oliveras of Signs (Of a Slumbering Beast)
The fourth band to play, Assume Nothing, would definitely be my uncharted discovery for the evening. Even though Assume Nothing was the only other non-local band for the evening besides the headliner, I had never heard of them before. The four-piece metal core band for lovers of Wage War and Gideon played a tight, heavy and energetic set. Now, I am usually a critic of bands whose front man plays guitar and sings due to the fact that I think some stage presence is lost, especially in the metal core genre. However, Assume Nothing and lead singer Riley Roush just did it right, and I didn’t want to look away for a second. I could easily see this band on a major tour on bigger stages and still easily being able to hold their own. I’m super excited that I was able to discover these guys and I will defiantly be keeping my eye out for Assume Nothing.
Above: Assume Nothing
Above: Riley Roush of Assume Nothing
Finally, the main act of the night, The Funeral Portrait. I was lucky enough to see the Funeral Portrait last fall in Rochester, NY when they were on tour with Hotel Books. The first thing you notice when you see The Funeral Portrait live is their stunning stage presence. From bass player Robert Weston holding it down on stage right with his quirky hijinks, to lead singer Lee Jennings making proper use of the stage, hardly staying in one spot for longer than a moment. During their last song of the evening Casanova (C’est La Vie) The Funeral Portrait created one of my favorite summer concert moment by bringing about one third of the crowd onto the stage to finish off their set, which created a genuine home town and fun moment for everyone in the crowd. Lee even went into the crowd to personally bring up a particular fan that looked like he wanted to be on the stage so bad, but was too nervous. Once on stage, the fan began beaming from ear to ear. What the Funeral Portrait really understands is that no matter how big your band gets at the end of the day it is all about the fans. The Funeral Portrait really has it all, great stage presence, great music, and a real down to earth mindset. There are great things coming for this band and I am excited to see what the future holds.
Above: Lee Jennings of The Funeral Portrait
Above: Robert Weston of The Funeral Portrait
Above: The Funeral Portrait