Photos and Review by Micah Gummel
It has been a while since New Hampshire got the full headline treatment from Halestorm. This show was the first time Halestorm has been to the Casino Ballroom playing two consecutive sold out nights. I’m betting they will be back soon. This was their 2nd stop after kicking off the tour in their home state of PA. It’s a special tour to Lizzy, as she was saying:
This is a tour I’ve wanted to put together for a long time. This tour is a different breed, showcasing loud, powerful female voices. Every frontwoman here holds her own both on and off the stage, and has fought more than her share of the good fight. This isn’t your sister’s woman music fest! I’m honored to have the legendary Lita Ford on this run and welcome newcomers Dorothy who make me so proud of the future of rock. All fans of true rock music—men, women, everyone—need to see this show.
Kicking the night off was Dorothy hailing from Los Angeles, California. In true LA style they put on quite the show. This was my first time seeing and hearing them. Front woman Dorothy Martin kicked the crowd in to high gear from song number one diving in to some of their newest tracks.
Next up was hard rocker Lita Ford. As anybody who has seen her before knows, she’s the queen of knowing how to get the crowd going. Lita was great to see. She was consistent as always. One of the best things about her is she tells the greatest stories to go along with the songs. Several times during the night she was gave props to Ozzy and even Lemmy showing her ability to work and history with many of the great rockers. One of the highlights was seeing an old friend and one of New England’s own rockers Gary Hoey, who was the producer of Lita’s last album Living Like a Runaway.
Now on to the Headliner and Grammy Award-winning hard rockers Halestorm, who brought two sold out shows to the Casino Ballroom in support of their latest album “Into The Wild Life”. Lzzy walked out jumping up on the rises with her tight glitter pants and a set of killer heels. The crowd was instantly energized and engaged at the start of the set with a song they were well familiar with, “Mayhem” the 7th track from the group’s most recent album,
Credit must be given to the Lzzy Hale’s talented bandmates with flawless bass tracks and perfect guitar riffs. Arejay Hale, on drums, had energy that no human should possess. He harnessed an insane amount of power in every song as he twirled around at his LED drumkit. Sticks were tossed into the air and caught without missing a beat as he kept the entire night rolling from behind his drum kit.
On guitar Joe Hottinger traded riffs with Lzzy throughout the night, a guitar hero herself for a good portion of the show when not too busy belting out hard rocking choruses. The shining moment for Hottinger came during “I Like It Heavy” when the band dropped their tuning down a few levels to play one of the more daring songs off their new album. Josh Smith must also be commended for his precise yet organic bass riffs that fuel many of Halestorm’s songs. The beauty of this band is they are four talented musicians who come together under one banner to create raw rock n’ roll.
Lzzy and company have been giving fans a healthy dose of Into the Wild Life on this tour and the show at the Casino Ballroom was no different; opening the set with “Mayhem”, “Amen”, and “Scream”, which gave fans a nice cross-mix of the new record’s sonic diversity. The band teased fans with “Love Bites (So Do I)” from 2012’s breakout album, The Strange Case Of…, then returned to new music, kicking off “Apocalyptic”. Arejay snuck in a little drum solo action showing he knows his way around the set, and Lzzy twisted the crowd up with the vampy, “Freak like Me”.
Lzzy thanked the crowd for indulging the band’s desire to play so much of the new record. The Pennsylvania rockers closed out the evening with a set of old-school favorites “Here’s To Us” and “I Miss The Misery”. In all, the band served up 19 tracks in a tight 90-minute set. While Halestorm left fans with nothing to grumble about as they poured out with contented smiles, you could still hear the murmurs of, “I wish they had played” this, or that, amid raves about the night’s lively performance.
Lita Ford photos
Halestorm Set List
3. Sick Individual
5. I Am the Fire
6. It’s Not You
8. Mz. Hyde
9. I Like It Heavy
10. Takes My Life
11. Dear Daughter
12. New Modern Love
13. Drum Solo/Circle
14. Love Bites (So Do I)
16. I Get Off
17. Freak like Me
18. Here’s to Us
19. I Miss the Misery