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Half God Half Devil Tour 08/05/2017 In This Moment, Motionless In White, Vimic, Little Miss Nasty

Half God Half Devil Tour
August 5th, 2017
Pinnacle Bank Arena
Lincoln, Nebraska
In This Moment, Motionless In White, Vimic, Little Miss Nasty

All good things must come to an end, even when we do our best to keep that ending at bay. Tonight’s performance would be the last date of the Half God Half Devil Tour, my 3rd and final show of this tour, and parting is always such sweet sorrow. Originally slated as an outdoors event, tonight’s show in Lincoln, Nebraska was moved indoors for fear of chaotic weather. The dark, ominous clouds hanging low in the sky would have been the perfect backdrop for Vimic, Little Miss Nasty, Motionless In White, and In This Moment, but not so much for the thousands of fans in attendance. Moving the show to the Pinacle Bank Arena also gave me the opportunity to finally attend at an event in one of Nebraska’s newest venues.
Once again Vimic thrashed the crowd during their set. It’s still amazing to see Joey Jordison on stage, especially behind the drum kit. With Jordison hidden behind his drums, Jed Simon, Kyle Konkiel, Matthew Tarach, and Steve Marshall each stalked their area of the stage. It still puts a smile on my face to see a keyboardist head bang. I just realized the first time I saw Vimic’s vocalist, Kalen Chase, on stage, it was while he was performing with Korn during the 2006 Family Values Tour, the same tour Jordison was the band’s touring drummer. Chase hasn’t lost any of that on stage energy from his time with Korn, but this time, instead of a pink tutu, he was dressed like a Victorian era Vampire Lord.
It’s mind boggling for me to think about all the bands these guys have been in and worked with. Korn. Slipknot. Scar the Martyr. Murderdolls. Rob Zombie. Marilyn Manson. The list goes on. These six men have spent the better part of the past two decades touring and performing in front of thousands of screaming fans. To me, Vimic feels more like a well-established band than one whos debut album was only recently released. If you get the chance to catch these guys on tour, don’t miss out.
Little Miss Nasty’s performance felt a bit out of place for me though. While these ladies know how to put on a burlesque show, especially with their choice or classic rock and metal music, having their set broken up into two separate performances felt rushed. That being said, these amazing, talented, gorgeous women did an excellent job keeping the crowd’s attention during their time on stage. In a male dominated genre, Little Miss Nasty break the mold of what so many feel should be a woman’s place in the industry by using their sexuality to remind us all that women truly rule the world.
As if the excitement level wasn’t already high, Motionless In White were about to blow the crowd away with one of the best performances of theirs that I’ve seen. Tonight being my 4th time seeing the band on this tour, including their highly anticipated main stage set at Northern Invasion, I had an idea what to expect for their set. What I didn’t expect was the crowd’s incredible reaction to their set.
Someone once said “Motionless In White aren’t a band, they’re a lifestyle,” and tonight several thousand fans were accepted into that lifestyle.
Once more, the stage lights dimmed, but this time the faint glow from several jack-o-lanterns grinned to life through the fog that rolled across the stage. The quartet from Pennsylvania strolled on stage like a pack of ghouls eager to feast as the intro to Carry the Torch played. Taking their positions, the band wasted no time pummeling the arena with Loud (Fuck It). After vocalist and founder Chris Motionless addressed the crowd, Rats creeped through the speakers. While I missed hearing Death March live, it was great to hear Rats again in a live capacity. It’s become one of my favorite tracks to see performed live. The band had used the first leg of the Half God Half Devil tour to tease several tracks from their current album, Graveyard Shift, but its release meant their newer songs were included more often.
Since first seeing Motionless In White open for In This Moment during the 2013 Hellpop Tour, the band has become one of my favorites. It doesn’t matter if it’s in front of a few thousand people like tonight’s show, or 25,000 for Northern Invasion, the energy from their live shows in massive. Chris’ crowd interaction is impeccable. Whether asking where all the metalheads were before the band shredded Devil’s Night, or thanking the fans for their undying love before Eternally Yours, Motionless In White will never forget where their roots are. Even their grim stage personas can’t hide the fact that these men love what they do and will always give everything for their shows.
As the night was drawing to an end though, tonight’s main course was about to be served, but not without a snag. As In This Moment’s black widow logo banner was being raised in front of the stage, one of the ropes came undone and the massive fabric dropped. Normally the banner obscured the stage as the band entered, casting earie shadows as the strobe lights flashed. While missing the banner isn’t a show stopping happening, it’s important to point out that the band worked around this glitch. Instead of the curtain dropping as Salvation ended to reveal the band, the band took it in stride and casually took their places as though it was always meant to be. The Blood Girls adjusted their entrance, drummer Kent Diimmel took his place behind the kit, co-founder and guitarist Chris Howorth positioned himself at the back of stage right, and bassist Travis Johnson and guitarist Randy Weitzel each found their platforms on their respective sides. While the opening chords of Blood were played, founder and vocalist Maria Brink, dressed in a full length sheer black gown and sunburst crown emerged at the back of the center stage platform. The crowd went ballistic. This was the moment thousands of fans had waited for.
For the past several years, Brink has indulged her sexuality and impressed the band’s fans by utilizing a costume change after each song, this resulted in gaps between those songs while she escaped to her behind the stage tent to change. With the Half God Half Devil Tour, that band has drastically cut down those costume change times, while still enthralling the crowd with her outfit choices that enhance the overall feel of their live shows. The Priestess attire was removed after Blood, and Brink stalked the stage for River of Fire in a flowing black robe.
When Brink returned to the stage for Adrenalize wearing an ornate mask, this time with the Blood Girls positioning themselves behind her, the image brought to life was similar to the Hindu Goddess, Kali. Arms wrapped in black gloves with long golden fingertips swayed and danced. Breaking from her routine, Brink removed the mask for the last chorus and verse of the song before walking down from the center stage platform for a thunderous performance of Roots.
Burn found Brink again center stage, on her own, soaring on wings of simmering cloth. Taking it down a notch, Brink played piano for Lay Your Gun Down as Weitzel and Diimmel carefully kept tempo. After introduced the band, the guys were given center stage for what fans affectionately call the Monster Jam, this time including Metallica’s For Whom the Bell Tolls.
One special treat for the last leg of the Half God Half Devil Tour was the performance of Black Wedding with guest vocalist Chris Motionless. The on stage chemistry between Brink and Motionless in undeniable, and I feel fortunate to have seen the two share a stage on this level.
The band hammered through an intense performance of Sick Like Me as Brink and the Blood Girls brought the Black Widow back to life, before closing the main set with their bluesy rock anthem Oh Lord. Oh Lord’s stage performance is one of my favorites. Weitzel and Johnson menacingly prowl on either side of the stage as Brink and the Blood Girls, dressed in long white gowns, sway back and forth while holding glowing orbs. The band’s performance of Oh Lord is what I imagine a true Pagan ritual to be.
After departing the stage, it took some coaxing from Brink for the crowd to get hyped for the band’s encore.
“Is there something we forgot,” Brink purred from off stage. “Whore,” the crowd replied.
As the stage lights shined a sinister red, the Blood Girls walked on stage, this time dressed as handmaidens, each shackled to a sign emblazoned with SHAME is large red letters. Brink’s speech from the introduction to Natural Born Sinner melded into one from Martin Luther King Jr. The message from King fit perfectly with the inspiration behind the band’s favorite track and final song of the evening. With Brink atop her podium, the fans below seethed while screaming Whore’s lyrics back at the band. As the strobe lights danced across the arena, giant pink, black and white balloons fell from the ceiling and bounced around the crowd. As Brink spread her message of confidence and acceptance, the Bloodgirls would hold up their signs, showing WHORE written on the reverse side, during the song’s chorus. 5 simple letters originally used to defame and embarrass were turned into a battle cry of love and unity.
Tonight may have been the final performance for this leg of the tour, but In This Moment’s energy and excitement level didn’t waiver, even after months of solid touring. Personally, I’m excited to see how the next leg of the tour will evolve, and what new theatrics the band will incorporate into their stage show.

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