Falling In Reverse at The Fillmore in Detroit, MI

Falling In Reverse ignite a wild crowd on the Live From The Unknown tour with support from Wage War, Hawthorne Heights, and Jeris Johnson.

Jeris Johnson gets the night started with an inspiring set of genre-spanning trap, rap-rock, rock, and pop-rock. He has garnered a huge following on TikTok and with this tour and appearances at festivals like Welcome to Rockville and Rocklahoma, he has expanded his fanbase with his high-energy performances. This was no exception as he never stops moving about the whole stage and plays up to the crowd to get them motivated. His set is short, but he manages to plow through 10 songs including “My Sword,” “Damn!,” “Friday,” “Crisis!” and “27 Club.” During “My Sword,” Jeris brandishes a sword while running about the stage. He even throws in a cover of Slayer’s “Raining Blood” and a rousing version of Papa Roach’s “Last Resort” to close it out that has the crowd cheering wildly. Several times he mentions he is bringing rock into the future. Watch out for Jeris in 2022 as he is gaining popularity and cranking out new music quite often. He even made the SiriusXm Octane Big Uns 2021 Countdown of top songs of the year.

Next up is Hawthorne Heights from Ohio. Having been around since 2001, they have a loyal following that keeps coming back for more. They kick off their set with “This Is Who We Are” from If Only You Were Lonely and follow that up with “Crimson Sand.” “Pens and Needles” is an old favorite that gets the crowd moving. They also roll out the newer song “Constant Dread” from the 2021 album The Rain Just Follows Me which gets a great round of applause. Fan-favorite “Saying Sorry” amps up the crowd as several start crowd surfing and just about everyone is singing out loud. They close out their set with probably their most popular song, “Ohio Is For Lovers,” that has the crowd singing along with many waving their arms the whole song. 

Wage War from Ocala, Florida really cranks up the energy level with a blistering 40-minute set that spans their four albums but is heavy on songs from their 2021 album Manic. This latest album has hit the mark with fans and their audience base is expanding. They rocked the stage at Welcome to Rockville in November with one of the most intense and fire-laden sets of the weekend. These guys do not disappoint as they are firing on all cylinders from the get-go with the lead-off track “Relapse” from Manic. The fans waste no time getting fired up either as a mosh-pit breaks out and many are pumping their fists in the air and headbanging. They keep the energy high with “Low” from Pressure and “Alive” from Blueprints. Lead singer Briton Bond leads the charge, working the stage from side to side and occasionally doing some headbanging himself that sends his long hair flying.

They keep the energy high with a barrage of songs from Manic including “Teeth,” “Godspeed,” “Manic,” and the aggressive “High Horse” that shows off the shredding of guitarist Stephen Kluesener and the pummeling of the skins by Stephen Kluesener. They wind down their set with “Gravity” and the hit “Circle the Drain” that has topped the Octane Big Uns countdown in recent months. They close it out with “Stitch” from 2017 that still finds the fans rocking hard with crowd surfing and moshing. It may have been in the single digits outside, but Wage War certainly heated things up at The Fillmore Detroit.

The lights dim and Falling In Reverse from Las Vegas take the stage to deafening applause. They open with “I’m Not a Vampire” from The Drug In Me Is You and follow that up with “Guillotine IV (The Final Chapter)” and “God, If You Are Above…,” both from the 2015 release Just Like You. Singer Ronnie Radke is the main focus and he commands the stage, pacing from side to side on a platform near the front of the stage. He has come a long way since his days in Escape the Fate. His and the band’s popularity has grown tremendously, and newer songs get regular rotation on SiriusXM Octane. Ronnie has a knack for writing catchy tunes, even when they are heavy. It is obvious from the fan reactions that many were here to see him. They not only show their appreciation after every song, but many are bouncing, waving their arms, moshing, and a large number sing along to almost every song.

Ronnie knows how to work the crowd and grab their attention through stares, using his hands with fast shaking motions, pointing, and often as if his free hand is going to claw him. He is backed by a great band consisting of guitarists Max Georgiev and Christian Thompson, bassist Wes Horton, and drummer Luke Holland. They keep it upbeat with the 2011 song “Raised by Wolves” that garners huge cheers and gets more fans crowd surfing. The security up front were rather busy with all of the surfers. After “F**k You and All of Your Friends,” Ronnie gives a tongue lashing to someone who threw something on stage. Using a few choice expletives, he calls him a coward. He also says “Detroit, you are rowdy as hell.” The fans love it. Taking it back to his days in Escape the Fate, they play “Not Good Enough for Truth in Cliche.”

The more rap-driven song “Losing My Mind” slows things down a bit, but it does not stop the crowd from moving. Illuminated with purple and green lights, the song “Drugs” has a cool vibe. Next up is probably the highlight song of the evening, “The Drug In Me Is You,” which really gets the fans bouncing, moshing, surfing, putting their horns up, and singing. They close out the main portion of their set with another Escape the Fate song, “Situations.”

Returning to the stage they play the brand new song “Zombified” which is already making a mark on rock radio. Ronnie takes some time to talk to the crowd. He says something about many artists burning out, yet he keeps making songs and you keep liking them, liking them a lot. Then he tells the crowd “Raise your hand if you’re an a**hole.” Of course, almost every hand goes up. That leads right into “Just Like You.” With the crowd already amped up, they close out with the huge 2020 hit “Popular Monster” that really whips the crowd into a frenzy. It is a great end to an already great set and evening. Before exiting the stage, Ronnie lets the fans know he loves them and just how grateful he and the band are for them coming out and supporting them.

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About Gary Pahlow 62 Articles
Gary is located in Rochester Hills, MI and has been officially photographing and writing concert reviews since early 2016. His main music interests are metal and hard rock, but he is also a fan of most genres including alternative, indie, jazz, and even some pop and country. When not covering or attending concerts, you can find him traveling with his wife or watching the Detroit Red Wings.