By Andrea Ramirez-Maciolek, Rock At Night Philadelphia Correspondent
Venue: The Fillmore Foundry, Philadelphia-November 17, 2016
It’s a mouthful to say but, wow what a fantastic show. The SiriusXM Alt Nation Advanced Placement Tour hit Philadelphia with not one, not two, but three amazing bands-Night Riots, The Shelters, and The Hunna. I felt like a kid in a candy store taking in all the sweet musical goodness of these three very different bands that are equally very talented. I was not quite sure what to expect as I was not familiar with most of the bands but I was left speechless and asking myself “where have I been”. I try not to be so hard on myself, great rock music is not rotated enough on the radio. Unfortunately these days, we just have to dig deeper to find good music but tours like the Advanced Placement Tour are a musical blessing showcasing some of the best bands on the rise.
The night began as usual, As we all wait for the show to begin I usually get into great conversations with people giving me information about a band I may not know a lot about. This usually becomes one of the highlights of the night as most of the people up front and center, eagerly awaiting a band are real die hard fans and I enjoy talking to them because they know their stuff and I get great insight from them. As I was waiting for the first band to take the stage, Night Riots, the person standing next to me was saying I will be impressed with Night Riots if I liked The Cure, and synth 80s music. Well, so far I was already loving the band just by the description and going by how everyone was trying to pack the front row of the stage. I realized then, something good was definitely going to happen. Night Riot delivered and amazing and energetic performance that outlined the rest of a music worthy night.
Hailing from California, Night Riots consists of band members Travis Hawley, Nick Fotinakes, Matt DePauw, Mikel Van Kranenburg, and Rico Rodriguez. They opened their set with the song “Follow You” from their 2015 EP Howl. Singer Travis Hawley, with his long dark hair and fur black coat as he appears in the music video “Nothing Personal”, enticed the crowd with his dark and sensual persona. Halfway through the set, the band pulled out two drums and placed them in front of the stage to do drum duel solos. Night Riots was impressively entertaining and just when you thought this band could not get more entertaining, during the song “Nothing Personal”, from their latest album Love Gloom, Travis climbed the rafters of the venue and started to sing above the crowd. When the fans told me to be prepared for a good show they were not kidding. I was blown away by this band and I am pretty sure they are on the road to bigger stardom.
The next band to hit the stage was California’s The Shelters. If you are a subscriber of SiriusXM, The Shelters have recently been on heavy rotation on Alt Nation Radio for very good reason. This band simply rocks! One of the hardest parts about my job is getting a story without being distracted by a phenomenal act. I was completely blown away by The Shelter’s performance that I was partially mesmerized for most of their set. I lost track of what I was doing for a moment. The Shelters are Chase Simpson, Josh Jove, Sebastian Harris, and Jacob Pillot. It’s hard to believe the band has only been together since 2015 because this band is solid. I know I was hooked the moment I saw the Rickenbacker on stage. The distinctive, twangy sound of the Rickenbacker in songs like “Rebel Heart”, and the vintage style chord pattern in songs like “Never Look Behind Ya” really pulls this band nicely together into a refreshing modern take on a retro influenced sound. Not only is their music retro influenced but you will also appreciate their fabulous stage presence. Make sure to grab their self titled album “The Shelters” because these guys will blow you away. It also does not hurt to have the help of Tom Petty producing the album.
Headlining act The Hunna made their entrance with the song “Big Rings” by Drake and Future playing in the background as they entered the stage. Their laid back and humble appearance turned into pure madness with the first strum of their guitars. When the band opened their set with the song “We Could Be”, my first impression was the similarity singer Ryan had with a young Kurt Cobain with his shy yet confident personality hiding behind his long blonde hair. The way he moved on stage with his Guns and Roses T shirt and his style reminiscent of the grunge era, I was taken back 20 years when music was not about a look but true talent. The Hunna, a four piece act from England made up of singer/guitarist Ryan Potter, guitarist Dan Dorney, bassist Jermaine Angin and drummer Jack Metcalfe have been busy on the road this year supporting acts like Jimmy Eat World and the Struts on tour. With the debut of their first record 100 back in August the band has picked up tremendous momentum. Having worked with producers Tim Larcombe (Halsey, Lana Del Rey) and Duncan Mills you know the Hunna are a band worth the buzz. Philadelphia loved The Hunna, it’s great that we gave them such a great welcome because it was the band’s first time in the City of Brotherly love. What Philly tour would not be complete for a band without a Philly Cheese Steak meal in which the band indulged in earlier before the show. My favorite Hunna song of the night was “You and Me” which was the first Hunna single to play in the US. The song “Bonfire” was a great bonding song as the audience sang most of the chorus and everyone knew the words as Ryan explained that it would be nice if we could all smoke under a Hunna tree if we could grow one in Philly.
As it’s always the case for me when I go on assignment to cover bands I may not know much about, I end up going home, listening to the music from a more personal perspective and completely become an instant fan wanting to see the band again so that I can experience the magic all over again. It is not often that I go see a show and be equally impressed by all the acts but this time The SiriusXM Alt Nation Advanced Placement Tour put three incredible rising bands that left me speechless. I cannot express how much you need to give Night Riots, The Shelters, and The Hunna a listen. They are three very talented, distinctive, and refreshing rock bands that you need to add to your music library.
The Hunna Setlist
- We Could Be
- Still Got Blood
- Never Enough
- You & Me
- Piece by Piece
- Coming Home
- Rock My Way
- She’s Casual
- Bad For You
find The Hunna:
Catch the band on the road:
* with Jimmy Eat World
** with The Struts
*** AltNation tour with Night Riots + The Shelters
Oct 09 2016 – Gothic Theatre – Englewood, CO*
Oct 10 2016 – Sokol Auditorium – Omaha, NE*
Oct 11 2016 – Barrymore Theatre – Madison, WI*
Oct 13 2016 – Newport Music Hall – Columbus, OH*
Oct 14 2016 – Mercury Ballroom – Louisville, KY*
Oct 15 2016 – Bogart’s – Cincinnati, OH*
Oct 16 2016 – The Blue Note – Columbia, MO*
Oct 18 2016 – Granada Theater – Lawrence, KS*
Oct 19 2016 – The Black Sheep – Colorado Springs, CO*
Oct 22 2016 – 93.3 ALT AZ Zombie Prom – Phoenix, AZ w/ Jimmy Eat World, Good Charlotte, The Struts, Lewis Del Mar, Barns Courtney, K. Flay
Oct 23 2016 – The Roxy Theatre – Los Angeles, CA*
Oct 24 2016 – The Fremont Theater – San Luis Obispo, CA*
Oct 27 2016 – The Glass House – Pomona, CA*
Oct 28 2016 – Arlington Theatre – Santa Barbara, CA*
Oct 29 2016 – Troubadour – Los Angeles, CA*
Nov 02 2016 – The Fillmore – San Francisco, CA**
Nov 03 2016 – The Fonda Theatre – Los Angeles, CA**
Nov 05 2016 – Shelter – Detroit, MI***
Nov 06 2016 – Bottom Lounge – Chicago, IL***
Nov 07 2016 – Triple Rock – Minneapolis, MN***
Nov 10 2016 – Adelaide Hall – Toronto, ON***
Nov 11 2016 – La Sala Rossa – Montreal, QC***
Nov 12 2016 – Gramercy Theatre – New York, NY***
Nov 13 2016 – ONCE Ballroom – Somerville, MA***
Nov 15 2016 – U Street Music Hall – Washington, DC***
Nov 17 2016 – The Foundry at The Fillmore – Philadelphia, PA***
Nov 18 2016 – Rex Theater – Pittsburgh, PA***
Nov 19 2016 – The Underground – Charlotte, NC ***
Nov 20 2016 – Mercy Lounge – Nashville, TN***
Nov 22 2016 – Terminal West – Atlanta, GA***
Nov 23 2016 – Parish @ House of Blues – New Orleans, LA***
Nov 25 2016 – Cambridge Room @ House of Blues – Dallas, TX***
Nov 26 2016 – Bronze Peacock @ House of Blues – Houston, TX***
Nov 27 2016 – Antone’s – Austin, TX***
Nov 30 2016 – Club Sound – Salt Lake City, UT
Dec 02 2016 – The Crocodile – Seattle, WA
Dec 03 2016 – Dante’s – Portland, OR
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I'm a photojournalist who is passionate about music. I love the adrenaline of shooting live concerts. Photography has given me the opportunity to photograph some of today's most legendary bands, and entertainers. When I'm not photographing music you can find me on the runway shooting New York and Philadelphia Fashion Week.
Favorite quote: “Photography is a love affair with life.” — Burk Uzzle