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For what seemed like forever, the Afterburner Tour finally happened. I, and many others, had been waiting for this one for such a long time. The lineup changed a few times before it landed where it did. At one point, I thought I saw rumors of Bilmuri joining the tour but who knows, one could hope. Wolf & Bear, Eidola, Veil of Maya, and Polyphia joined Dance Gavin Dance on this run, and it really was one for the books.

First up was Wolf & Bear, and to be honest, I had never heard of them.  However, I soon realized that their bassist, Tim Feerick, was also the bassist for Dance Gavin Dance as well and it immediately made sense. They are also part of Blue Swan Records, so it cleared up for me why they might be on this tour. I didn’t know any of the songs, but from what I heard, I could hear some DGD vibes. Overall, it was a solid performance.

Following Wolf & Bear was Eidola (who I was super excited about). They had just put out a new album, The Architect, a few weeks prior and I had it on repeat. They came out pumped and ready to have a good time. Eidola played several songs from their previous releases but also played some slammers from the new album. One that I had hope of hearing was “Perennial Philosophy”, and they did such a good job live with it. It was my first time seeing them live and I will keep an eye on them when they come back to Dallas.

Next up was Veil of Maya, which is a band that I also have never seen live but it was an interesting addition to the tour. I really didn’t know what to expect because it had been a while since I had listened to them, but they had some amazing stage presence. I really enjoyed how everything came together with their set. It flowed well and was super heavy. I didn’t recognize many of the songs but the one I did, was “Mikasa”. It went hard and a great set overall.

A set that was super amped about was Polyphia. I had just discovered them this past year after hearing “40oz” randomly on Spotify and was like, who are these dudes? I was captivated by their sound. I had some high hopes for their set, and they delivered. A few songs I was stoked about were “G.O.A.T”, “Goose”, and of course “40oz”. Tim Henson is extremely talented. I found myself just watching him go so hard on the lead guitar. Once of the best performances of the night by far. I can’t wait for them to come back.

And finally, the main act of the night, Dance Gavin Dance. The crowd was full, and the lights went dim. The band runs out on stage, Tilian hits the stage, and proceeds to start “Prisoner”. Sounding just like they did the last time I experienced them, I knew I was in for a treat. It has been awesome watching them grow into the band they have in the last 5 years. Soon after, they played some hits like “Son of Robot”, “Death of a Strawberry”, “We Own The Night”, and then closed with “Inspire the Liars”. Just absolutely destroyed the stage the entire time. It’s always a treat seeing Dance Gavin Dance because every single member of the band is so talented. Cannot wait to see them again.  Their stage presence and overall musical prowess is out of this world and a "10 our of 10" in my book for sure.

Overall, the Afterburner Tour is not one you want to miss out on. Hop on it if they roll through your area!

James Coffman

Photojournalist - Dallas

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