In Lancaster, PA, on Sept 8, the American rock band from Florida, Set It Off, rocked the Chameleon Club during their Killer In The Mirror tour. Named after their newest single, the “Killer In The Mirror,” the tour was the band’s way of introducing fans to the new era of the band. With openers like VISTA, an electronic alternative rock group from New York, De’Wayne Jackson, a rapper from Texas, and Chapel, an indie pop duo from Georgia, Set It Off filled the small club with over two hundred people.
VISTA opened the show with a lot of energy. Having never heard of them, my friend Samantha and I were pleasantly surprised when they started playing. Although there were four people performing on stage, I was surprised to learn that the group was actually a duo. The lead singer, Hope, jumped around the stage with so much energy I thought she was going to fall off the stage at one point.
Greg, the other half of VISTA, jumped into the crowd at one point and said, “I got excited and just wanted to say hi.”
VISTA performed about six of their songs, including their newest single that just came out on Sept. 21st, “Born For Blood.”
The next act, De’Wayne Jackson, was interesting to watch. He seemed disoriented most of the time and repeated the word “bounce” over and over again in every song he performed. Samantha and I did not exactly enjoy his set, but the crowd around us sure did. Jackson was jumping all around the stage while he performed. At one point in his set, he just laid on his back on the ground and started talking to the crowd about how happy he was that Set It Off gave him a chance to tour with them. He also gave my friend and I a heads-up about where Set It Off was going to be after the show was over so we could meet them.
The final opening act was Chapel. This duo consisted of the lead singer, Carter Hardin, who also played guitar and keyboard, and a female drummer, Kortney Grinwis, who surprised everyone with her skills. Hardin was a great performer and always made sure that Grinwis was also getting a lot of recognition for her drumming skills. They played about seven songs, including a new one, “Mushy Gushy.” Grinwis played an amazing drum solo, which hyped up the crowd. Hardin joked, saying, “Don’t give her anymore power!”
Then, it was finally ready for the main event, Set It Off. All the lights in the Chameleon Club shut off and a wave of short-lived silence went over the crowd. After about a minute, one dim red light turned on, pointing directly at the lead singer, Cody Carson, walking on stage. Screams erupted through the crowd as Carson started singing one of my favorite songs, “Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing.” I was hoping they would perform it live, so the fact they started out the show with it, made my whole night that much better. The lights flashed red, green, blue, and white the whole show. Carson called a friend of the band’s up on stage with him during the song and had his friend stage dive into the crowd, preparing us for the rest of the night.
The band played every song I hoped they would play live. Carson crowd surfed just about every other song. At one point, they threw an air mattress into the crowd and he jumped onto it, crowd surfing on the mattress. Every time he would jump into the crowd, he would be pushed toward Samantha and I. This required us to use just about all our upper body strength we could find to keep him up in the air.
The band played a total of 13 songs, including a short cover of “Backstreet’s Back” and a melody of every song they did not get a chance to perform. The melody was an acoustic performance that had the 3 other band members front and center with Carson. This melody included songs from all three of their albums.
Around the middle of the show, Carson exclaimed, “Lancaster, you’ve made me speechless. And I’m a big talker. There’s not that many crowds that leave me speechless, so give yourselves an around of applause for being the best crowd on tour so far!”
After the show was over at around 11:00 p.m., Samantha and I made our way to the merchandise tables at the back of the club. There we met VISTA and Chapel. They took pictures with us and told us they were glad we enjoyed the show. We said hi to De’Wayne Jackson, but did not take photos with him.
Sometime around 11:30 p.m. Samantha and I made our way out to the front of the Club to wait to meet Set It Off. However, Jackson stopped by and told us that the band would be at the back of the building to meet fans. Samantha and I thanked him and made our way to the back of the building to get in line.
We first met Dan Clermont, the lead guitarist of the band. He took photos with us and signed our tickets for the show. Zach DeWall, the bassists of the band, was next. It was after midnight which meant that it was officially my birthday. DeWall asked me if I enjoyed the show and I told him, “Well, it was a birthday present to myself, and it was the best decision I ever made.” DeWall replied with, “Oh my gosh! It’s your birthday?”, which then led to him giving me a hug. He also took photos with us and signed our tickets.
Cody Carson took the longest to make it out of the tour bus because he was talking to his mom on the phone. He was also a big talker, so he was taking his time getting around to everyone in the line. When he finally made it to Samantha and I, he started out by giving us each a hug and asking us how we were and if we enjoyed the show. Someone behind us mentioned that it was after 1 a.m. which made him say, “Are you serious? It’s after 1 a.m.?” At this point, I said, “I’ve been twenty-two for a full hour now.” Carson smiled, pulled me into a hug, and told me happy birthday. He then clarified my age and said, “That makes me want to sing the song.” I told him I had no issues with him singing the song, thinking he was going to be singing “Happy Birthday,” only for him to start singing “22” by Taylor Swift. He started laughing and apologized for singing Taylor Swift. He gave me another hug, took a photo with both Samantha and I, and signed both our tickets. When asked if he knew if the drummer, Maxx Danziger, would be out, he replied with, “I honestly have no idea.” Samantha and I decided to leave at this point since it was nearly 2 a.m.
Set It Off already blew me away with their music, but their amazing performance and dedication to meeting and connecting with fans really solidified how genuine they were. Carson stated, “We’re all friends here. We’re all here to enjoy music and connect with people. That’s what we’re all about.”
“Set It Off was crazy, but it felt so great to be surrounded by people who felt the same way as I did with the band,” Samantha commented.
If you like rock, or punk rock music, check out Set It Off on Spotify and follow them on Twitter at @SetItOff and Instagram at @setitoffband.