The Color Morale show at Penny Road Pub last Saturday was a show that everyone in the area was waiting for. It had been a very long time since The Color Morale had played a small scale hometown show and with great local support from Arkham, Leviah, Shrapnel ,and Between Myth and Legend (last show for BMAL) as well as For All I Am jumping aboard, the place was bound to be packed. And it was.
The local bands were all very good, setting the bar high for local groups around the area, most notably Arkham. This band brought more energy to the stage than any of the bands before them as their vocalist was constantly in the crowd and at one point, on the ceiling. Their punk style brought a nice diversity to the show and it was great to see the crowd participating in the action with the local bands.
For All I Am was the first non-local band to take the stage as this was the group preceding The Color Morale. For All I Am did a great job overall as they jumped from playing their popular songs as well as older material and less-popular tracks off the album. The two most notable aspects of their performance was their decision to use their own sound guy and their new guitar player/clean vocalist. To start with, the sound guy is someone that the group has been friends/partners with since their humble beginnings when he was their photographer and once they started to tour, he had started doing their sound for live shows. The reason this is worth mentioning is because their live-sound was significantly worse than any other band that night and even though their slot was still enjoyable, this sudden change in sound quality was a harsh adjustment at first. To counter the poor sound, the new guitarist/clean singer seemed to fit in great with the band and he also performed very well live. His voice sounded great if you are someone who didn't know any better, you wouldn't have even guessed he was a replacement.
Next up was the headliner, The Color Morale. These guys always bring great excitement to any bill they are on and especially one that they are headlining in their hometown. Their performance lived up to almost every positive comment I had heard before I saw them and I was greatly satisfied with the show overall. The band played mostly popular tracks but they did venture back to their first album so old fans could reminisce along with the band. Almost everything about their performance was great. The sound was amazing and despite their recent member changes, everyone seemed to be on the same page. The band even fit in a couple of acoustic songs to break up their usual routine and let the crowd sing (very loudly) along to their own songs as well as cover of “Too Close”. The only picky complaint I had with their performance is that the vocalist very rarely sang the clean parts to their songs. Not that someone else was doing it, it's that he was almost always ad-lib and go significantly off course of the original melody. At first it was interesting but it became a bit annoying towards the end of the show as many people wanted to sing along and hear the melodies that they loved but what was being sung was barely recognizable.
Overall this show was hands down THE best show I have ever seen at Penny Road Pub. Not only were there great local acts but the larger bands all originated in the area and it was a great example of what local shows could/should be. The energy in the room was great and it was nice to see everyone from the area of shows all at one concert.
Rating : 9/10
(Also, I didn't address the fight that broke out at the show in this article simply because the fight started in the very back of the room and continued outside so the majority of people in the room had no idea that any sort of altercation was going on until long after the show. Plus, my job here is to review the overall show and the bands' performances, not review the owner of the venue and his decisions for security. If you want to know more about the fight, we talked briefly about it in a separate article where we also linked Arkham's description of what happened.)