Halestorm, Black Veil Brides, Mothica, Wembley Arena, December 9th 2023

When you perform to a sold out Wembley Arena you gotta go all out and Halestorm definitely know how to do that!

Words and Pictures: Rebecca Bush / (C) beckybphoto

The crowds have gathered at Wembley tonight for the one UK stop on Halestorm’s current EU tour and it is a big one! The bands biggest UK headline show to date promises to be one hell of an evening.

Tonight’s supports come in the form of two greats , Mothica and Black Veil Brides.

Mothica

Opening the show is Mothica, a singer songwriter from Oklahoma who has gained a decent following over the last few years with releases on band camp and Spotify and her viral video on TikTok. She took to the stage and immediately it was apparent that she had many fans here tonight to cheer her on. McKenzie wears her heart on her sleeve and opens up to the room of 12,000 people about her struggles with mental health and abuse before breaking into heart wrenching track ‘Forever 15’ and laying herself bare as the room lights up with phone lights front to back and everyone stands in solidarity with her – one girl holding a sign that reads “Queen Mothica, Thank you for still being here and giving us a voice”. Bringing out her fun side her and her band mates throw beach balls into the audience as they perform their cover of smash mouths ” All Star” and it is clear to see that she has won over many more fans here tonight , she belonged on that stage and she put on a great show. Definitely looking forward to what’s next from her.

 

Black Veil Brides

Black Veil Brides take the stage in a burst of fire and fury and absolutely blew the roof off the Arena with their goth metal anthems. The set was bursting at the seams with blistering guitar solos powerful anthemic hits and a healthy dose of pyro! Andy Black and co. are on top form as they power through a great set list and they all know how to make a stage their own. Totally at home in front of the huge sea of faces singing along and raising their fists in the air they are all fully engaged with each other and their audience. Wembley is a huge milestone for all the bands on tonight’s bill and it’s clear that they are all humbled by the experience. The set list is an impressive mix of old and new all of which invoke loud and enthusiastic responses from early hit ‘Knives and Pens’ to the more recent ‘Scarlet Cross’ the voices from the crowd don’t dwindle. The band go full throttle and give their all tonight and it is very well received , sometimes no matter how good a support act are the desire to see the headliner stops you from fully committing to enjoying them this was not the case for Black Veil Brides and I daresay the crowd were even disappointed to see their set end. 

Halestorm

The suspense builds as the lights come up and then there is an explosion of confetti as they come in strong with opener ‘Misery’ and as they say – the crowd goes wild! Its such an exciting moment and the atmosphere is incredible as they hurtle through hit after hit. Lzzy dedicates third song ‘I Get Off’ to all the women in the room and it is a powerful and emotional rendition fueled by the collective energies of both crowd and band. Every member of the band is just bursting and beaming with pride and they all bring so much energy and personality, it’s a beautifully cultivated and curated family and they are at their strongest tonight. The family atmosphere extends to the crowd who are all singing , crying , laughing and cheering along at every moment and Lzzy makes special mention of the devoted fans that show up night after night , city after city show after show and thanks them and all the fans for their dedication. Every song tonight is emotionally charged and executed with nothing more than pure talent all the band playing off each other and on top form. Arenas are a very fitting place for Halestorm they deserve to be here and every upturned joyful expression is testament to just how hard they have worked and just how far they will surely go. Tonight was an absolute triumph and I am glad to have been there to witness it.

SETLIST:

I Miss the Misery (with ‘Raise Your Horns’ acapella snippet)
Love Bites (So Do I)
I Get Off (With ‘Crazy on You’ acapella snippet)
Wicked Ways
Freak Like Me
Amen (extended outro)
Terrible Things
Rock Show (Lzzy with Joe on electric guitar; first verse and chorus only)
Familiar Taste Of Poison
Takes My Life
Drum Solo
Back From the Dead
Bombshell
I Am the Fire
Encore:
Break In / Shatter Me (Lzzy on piano)
Raise Your Horns (Lzzy on piano)
Here’s to Us
The Steeple

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