Saosin: A Word of Mouth Success

Success in today’s underground music scene is reached in a variety of ways: longevity, touring, and word of mouth. Saosin definitely fits the mold of the latter.

Formed in Orange County, California, Saosin (which started with a different line-up) began in the homes of their parents. Five songs were made which would become the anthems that hardcore, punk, and emo kids alike would come to know and love very well. Using the success of purevolume and smartpunk, Saosin began their rise by playing shows with bands like Yellowcard, Senses Fail and Story of the Year. Gradually they saw more and more kids coming out and labels came rushing in.

All was going well for Saosin as they began recording their first full length album, when suddenly singer Anthony Green decided to leave the band. At the time, it seemed like a devastating setback, but the band rebounded and resurfaced a few months later playing Warped Tour with vocal help from Phil Sneed of Story of the Year.

During this time the band held open tryouts for singers. Cove Reber was the one who stuck in the heads of the band. A few shows and two recorded songs later, the newest line-up of Saosin was cemented (Reber, Guitarists/Vocalists Beau Burchell and Justin Shekoski, Bassist Chris Sorenson and Drummer Alex Rodriguez).

Fast forward to June 19, 2005 at the House of Blues in Anaheim. Saosin sits with family and friends on the patio of the restaurant about to headline one of the biggest shows of their career at a venue some reach only after selling half a million albums or more. It is remarkable that a band with only an EP to their name can headline a 950 capacity venue. But not only headline, sell it out weeks before the show!

Inside, the Anaheim stop of the “All Dudes All The Time Tour” began with Terminal, a band who hasn’t quite polished their sound. Next on was Codeseven who presented dark and moody landscapes and eerie vocals. Aside from the occasional joke from band members, heckling from the crowd and technical difficulties, the attention drifted from the two bands.

Third up was Acceptance from Seattle. This emo-rock quintet impressed with a tight sound, hard hitting songs, and plenty of energy. The show felt like it started as soon as they broke into their opening song “This Conversation is Over.” Running through their set, it was obvious that the band are touring veterans.

The crowd responded right away and sang their heads off during the band’s single “Permanent.” Hitting every note with perfect timing, Acceptance stole the show and proved a very tough act to follow.

Anberlin, another band strongly supported by friends Story of the Year, were the co-headliners of the tour. They bring to the table a wide range of band member ages (18-29) and two proper full length albums. Sticking mostly with songs from 2005’s Never Take Friendship Personal, Anberlin promoted an energetic live show. The band played such favorites as “A Day Late,” “Time and Confusion,” and “Glass to the Arson.”

Finally the time had come to see hometown heroes Saosin. With the opening song, “Lost Symphonies,” the band, like the two before them emphasized the live show. The second song of the night came in the form of a brand new one, the only new song they’d play all night. Ripping the faces off everyone from the energy and hard hits, Saosin played all the songs they have including all five from the 2003 EP Translating The Name, “Mookie’s Last Christmas,” “I Can Tell,” and new single “Bury Your Head.”

There was not much of an encore, but it was entertaining nonetheless. Singer Cove Reber admitted “We have never actually made it through the entire song, but we will play what we can,” when talking about the cover they were going to attempt. Sure enough the song ended abruptly when they reached the point they didn’t know. They thanked everyone, shook hands with people in the front, and left the stage.

Saosin showcased amazing musicianship and skill by nailing every complex riff to every song. Reber is still growing into his voice and the band, however. Although missing a few notes and failing to reach the pitch of Anthony Green in a few spots, it was still a great performance. More shows, new songs and time will make the band even better. They are finishing up their full length as this is being written and it will be great to see where the band goes from here.

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