Written by Abel Carmona
Mar 27, 2007 at 08:00 PM
ImageSoon after arriving at Warehouse Live we met up with Skillets tour manger and he led us to the back where we sat down with Skillets John Cooper and had a great conversation. Right as we sat down Korey Cooper, John’s wife and backing vocalist/guitarist, came out and said hi as she was putting their young daughter to bed. I asked how he liked being able to be with his family on the road. He said that it was one of the best things he could ever hope for, not having to miss his children grow up. I also asked how this tour came together with Skillet and Flyleaf and he told me that they had played a few “Acquire The Fire” shows together, which are a Christian based teen mission program.

One of the things I had always wondered was what the biggest difference between mainstream bands and Christian bands, John said that for the most part both are a lot alike. Except for most Christian bands it’s harder to get exposure and to find new fans that won’t down them just for being a Christian band. But John also said he felt things were changing for the better with more and more of the newer Christian bands finding sounds that are closer to what people are actually listening to. Having better success at crossing that imaginary line the separates the two genres.

After my conversation with John I thought about a lot of what he said. I myself have been one of those people who would never think to give a Christian band a listen to no matter what anyone would say. But to my surprise there is a few out there that really have a great sound and their lyrics aren’t trying to push a belief on you that Christian bands of old did way too much.  Their just out to rock and have a good time doing it weather you believe or not. And while no I’m not going to go all godly on ya, I will at least make a little more of an effort to give some of these bands a chance.

Once we got back into the Warehouse I got ready to see Fair To Midland who has become a favorite of mine this past year. Before they played I got to talk to guitarist Cliff Campbell and told him I had seen and reviewed them a few times before. He seemed so stoked that I even knew who he was, so much so that when Fair To Midland walked on stage he came and shook my hand from the stage and thanked me for being there. The last time I saw Fair To Midland vocalist Darroh Sudderth had a few setbacks during the set. One being that during their set he broke his mic and by the time it was fixed he seemed to lose his focus and the set suffered.

But this time whole different story, not a problem in sight and Fair To Midland rocked what had become a full house. One of the things I have come to enjoy about Fair to Midland is Sudderth’s impressive vocals as he ranges from whispering cries to screaming lunatic. Sudderth’s also very animated on stage weather he’s slamming himself down on stage or dosing himself with water before doing what looks something like a seizure and having water fly all over fans, He is always entertaining to watch. If you’re interested Fair To Midlands EP “Drawn and Quartered” has been released by System of a Down front-man Serj Tankian’s new label Serjical Strike.

Next on the bill was Skillet, they walked on stage to my surprise with an immense ovation. As their set began two huge nitrogen canons on both sides of the stage, fired a thick white cloud of fog into the air that looked awesome as well as cooled down the crowd.  Skillet took me by surprise I wasn’t expecting a hard sound from them at all. But a lot of their songs have a very metal tone to them as does John Coopers vocals and while he’s no death metal vocalist, He can get some vicious screams out with the best of them.

There were a few of Skillets songs that seemed to have a little too much pop for my taste. But I think some of them were from early albums that were geared in that direction.  Watching Skillet live show I have found a respect for Korey Cooper, she is one rocking chic. Not only is she an awesome guitarist, but she pulls double duty as the bands keyboardist and backing vocalist. Lead guitarist Ben Kasica also played well but, he doesn’t have the onstage presents that John and Korey do.

And while I can’t say I became a fan that night, it has certainly made me open my mind and ears to other forms of rock. That in the past I wouldn’t have thought to even look at much less listen too.  If you want to find out for yourself, you can hear a few of Skillets new tracks on their MySpace from the new album “Comatose”.

And now boys and girls, just what you’ve been waiting for Flyleaf, after the band walked on stage vocalist Lacey Mosley came out to huge applause. I had to laugh a little because of the huge riser that had been placed on center stage for Mosley. Being that she is only 4’11 if it wasn’t for the riser most fans wouldn’t see her at all.  As they started their set all I kept thinking was “damn that’s a lot of sound from a tiny girl”. Mosley has one of the most, vast ranges when it comes to her vocals. She go’s from a little whispering girl to a fanatical screaming machine in less than a second.

I also took notice of bassist Pat Seals, who in my opinion outshines the rest of the band. He would take running leaps off of anything that was on stage. He was hard to not notice as he flew across the stage for most of the night. During one song he jumped off of the riser that was on stage and went right over Lacey Mosley. Mosley even took to the air a few times jumping off the riser and even climbing the huge speakers behind the band and jumping off.

Flyleaf seems to have become something of a second coming for vocalist Lacey Mosley, so to speak. In her bio she says “I used to be in a really negative band, and that seemed to almost fuel my emptiness because that’s what the songs were about”. And now with Flyleaf she seems to have found something to fill that emptiness. Before Flyleaf came to be, Mosley was living in Mississippi and it wasn’t until she moved to Texas that she met what would soon become her band. After they got together and went through a few name changes, Flyleaf toured all over Texas and hasn’t stopped yet.

Flyleaf’s st was mostly songs off of the self titled album “Flyleaf”, such as “Fully Alive”, “Breathe Today” and “Cassie”. There were a few new songs also played but I couldn’t make out the names as Lacey Mosley was speaking. She kind of reminded me of Ozzy in that sense, when she’s singing she’s easy to understand, but talking is another story altogether, her little voice was almost imposable to hear much less understand. Fans seem to enjoy Flyleaf’s performance on stage tonight, I thought they did ok. Just wasn’t my kind of thing I guess. If you are a fan and can’t wait to see Flyleaf again. Their scheduled to be on Family Values Tour which will be making a stop here in Houston sometime this summer.