The Used – Royal Oak Music Theater – 5.19.18

The Used, Red Sun Rising, The Fever 333
Royal Oak Music Theater – Royal Oak, MI – 5.19.18
Photographer: Kyle Smutzki

The Used quickly traveled from Rock on the Range to Royal Oak, MI for an action packed show with friends Red Sun Rising and The Fever 333. The band recently released their new album The Canyon last fall.

Starting the show in top gear off was the 3 piece supergroup – The Fever 333 consisting of Jason Aalon Butler (Letlive) Stephen Harrison (The Chariot) and Arin Improta (Night Verses).

Trailing from hometown of Inglewood, California these guys put everything into their performance. Opening their set off with a political display of Butler standing with a white-clothed bag wrapped around his head while having his left hand covering his right, he stood in front of a white backdrop while audio and projections of social issues from our history to present were being laid out.

Throughout their set, the members took their interaction with the crowd to the next level. Butler sang “We’re Coming In” from the crowd. On top of that, guitarist Harrison signaled for the participants in the mosh to part as he would jump into the pit and perform a section of his part in “One Of Us” in the middle of it.

Next, it was time for Red Sun Rising. Hailing from Akron, Ohio, the band smashed out hit after hit while throwing in favorites such as “Deathwish”, “Veins” & “Clarity” from their March 2018 release off of Razor & Tie, Thread. 

It isn’t very often you see a band with three guitarists and these guys definitely used that unique formation to their advantage. Their rock and roll rhythms in combination with dynamic vocal notes by front man Mike Protich left everyone in the venue trying to tap their toes to the beat.

Waiting for the headliners to open their set, fans could see movements and shadows behind a large white banner with the album art from The Canyon covering the back half of the stage while the mic stands in the front wrapped in scarves. Everyone seemed anxious to see The Used take the stage and perform the songs that they have come to love throughout the band’s 17 years.

Time would come that the large banner would drop and expose a stage full of lighting and the group that we were all eager to see. Opening their set with “Maybe Memories” from the bands 2002 self-titled album, the crowd mirrored the raw energy coming from lead-singer Bert McCracken.

The band covered all grounds of their catalog with throwing in some of their older hits such as; “The Bird and the Worm”, “All That I’ve Got”, “Taste of Ink” & even throwing in one of my personal favorite tracks of theirs, “I Caught Fire”.

All while mixing singles from their more recent releases such as “Rise Up Lights” from their 2017 record, The Canyon and “Cry” from 2014’s Imaginary Enemy.  Their 14 track set seemed to fly by.

Catching an ongoing band that I’ve grown up listening to since I was a teenager for my first time will always be special, and tonight The Used took not only the control of the theater but also probably everyone’s voices the next day who sang along with McCracken.

The Used will be performing at multiple festivals this summer including select dates of Vans Warped Tour, Rock Fest and Reading and Leeds Festival. You can follow the band on Facebook for updates.

The Fever 333

Red Sun Rising

The Used 

 

Kyle Smutzki