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LIVE REVIEW: AFI & Circa Survive Tour - A Match Made in your Nonexistent Heaven.

Date of show: July 14, 2017 Location: Express Live, Columbus, OH Review by: Tori Biggs

Fresh of The Blood Tour in support of their most recent album, California natives AFI teamed up with Circa Survive for a co-headlining summer tour. The first show on the docket was in Columbus, Ohio at Express Live on June 14. If the first night was any indication for the rest of the dates, this is without a doubt one of the can't-miss tours of the summer.

Openers Citizen kicked off the night with an exciting and energetic 30 minute set. Though unknown to many fans, the band drew in the crowd and surely left with many new fans of their own. Between songs, Citizen expressed their admiration and influence for both headliners, serving to make fans even more excited for what was to come.

Circa Survive hit the stage after a bit of time off, but it was clear they haven't lost a step. The crowd's elation was overshadowed only by the band's amazing energy and undeniably love of playing music. Vocalist Anthony Green took the time to express many times over how much he "fucking love[s] playing music". This sentiment was displayed throughout their set as it was clear that Green could feel every kick, every hi-hat, every strum deep within his bones.

Playing old favorites and a selection of new tracks from their upcoming album, The Amulet, including the live debut of their recently released single 'Lustration', Circa Survive were absolutely on fire. The entire venue was packed with fans singing along as Green put everything in him into his performance. Green also let his personality show through with several fan interactions, including telling a fan he wanted to bite off his 'hipster mustache'. After a brief touring hiatus, Circa Survive is more than ready to be back on stage.

Finally, AFI entered the stage. The packed house rushed forward, cramming together tighter than guitarist Jade Puget's skinny jeans. AFI's fanbase is among the most dedicated groups in the musical world. All it takes is the first 30 seconds of their set to see how just true that is. Every single person in attendance was screaming, singing along, and feeling the music in a way that seems almost spiritual.

Though still in support of The Blood Album, released early this year, only a handful of tracks from the album were included. The band chose instead to return the dedication and give the people what they really want; the full AFI experience.

Fan or not, there's no choice but to respect AFI's ever-changing setlist; with over 25 years of music under their belt, the band makes certain to include a few songs that are exclusive to each show. You could attend every date on this tour and expect a new show every night. From fan favorites from older albums to lesser-known B-sides, each show is wholly unique, a trend AFI has followed for years.

Since starting their run supporting The Blood Album in late January, AFI has been treating fans to songs not played in many, many years. Columbus was lucky enough to enjoy 'The Despair Factor' from 1998's The Art of Drowning, as well as Sing the Sorrow-era B-side 'On the Arrow'. 'Bleed Black' and 'This Time Imperfect', both from STS, had die-hard fans in throes of euphoria.

Vocalist Davey Havok exuded as much energy as ever, seemingly slipping into his own world of showmanship. After over two decades of touring, Havok is every bit as kinetic and agile as he was in '91. He continues to climb, jump, and kick his way through the set, showing no sign of slowing down. His quirky movements and gestures are as entertaining as they are adorable and let his natural performer shine through as Puget, bassist Hunter Burgan, and drummer Adam Carson hit every note flawlessly.

AFI has a long-standing reputation of never disappointing their fans and this tour is an ideal example of that. Joining up with Citizen and Circa Survive, the team provides every aspect of the perfect rock show; excitement, energy, crowd reception, and an unmistakable love for being on stage.

The tour will continue across the country throughout the summer, so there is still plenty of time to get in on one of the most powerful and objectively enjoyable shows of the year. Any fan of Circa Survive or AFI should not miss out. Trust me, you'll thank me later.

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