Music today goes by the vibe of EMO: that soulful punk that kicks you in your heart or your shins, and the St. Louis homecoming show for Story of the Year with Letter Kills was no exception.
From Temecula, California, Letter Kills brought exciting, high-energy moves, presence and beat to St. Louis’ Pageant Theater on Friday, January 9th. The band was clearly into it, working the crowd to the hilt. Singer Matt Shelton would have blended in with all the other kids there, wearing his low-rise jeans, a sweatshirt and bandana, had he not first taken the stage in a screeching frenzy.
With great interaction and stage-play among the band members, these guys are having a good time and want the world to know it. As Matt sang “Don’t Believe In Me” from their debut album [Island Records], spun the microphone in a well-practiced helicopter speed, then wound and tangled himself in it. Throughout the set, he grabbed his hair, expressing gestures that revealed his emotional connection to the music. On his hands and knees and rolling around the entire time, Matt and Co. floored themselves. In closing his set, Matt dove into the crowd twice and came out limping. The crowd loved it.
But there was a reason this show was sold out, and that reason was St. Louis’ story of the year, Story of the Year. A lot of disappointed fans had to walk away without tickets for this all-ages show—a crime since the over-21 balcony sat empty. Everyone in town seems to know the band, and more than half the crowd wore SOTY shirts.
Authentic, loud, clear vocals, giving St. Louis their all. Proving it to their hometown. These guys are not afraid to break out into a classic rock-style guitar jam and then mix it up with the snotty flair of punk. The crowd went nuts from the word GO—and that’s the advice we’ll give emo fans the next time they come through town.
Pictured: Story of the Year