Last updated on October 7th, 2023 at 08:51 am
Scene legends The Used, alongside mainstays Sleeping with Sirens, delivered a doubleheader at the Fillmore in Minneapolis. Performing to a crowd of mainly older millennials, the evening felt like it was ripped right out of an old Warped Tour.
While the show overflowed with nostalgia, both acts have remained relevant in the modern era, with The Used touring behind their 2023 album Toxic Positivity and Sleeping with Sirens performing behind their 2022 album Complete Collapse.
However, the show felt like a tale of two bands. Kellin Quinn and his Sleeping with Sirens bandmates felt fresh and polished, while Bert McCracken and company felt a little rougher and well-worn.
Perfecting their 2010s pop-rock meets post-hardcore sound, Sleeping with Sirens showed no sign of aging in their performance. Quinn’s iconic voice and his bandmates’ strong musicianship and stage presence all culminated in a highly entertaining set tailor-made for jumping, crowd surfing, and letting out your angsty feelings.
While fan-favorite tracks “Kick Me,” “If You Can’t Hang,” and “If I’m James Dean…” were unsurprising standouts, new additions like “Crosses” were very much welcomed by fans.
Curiously, their set was only nine songs long, leaving fans wanting more. Previous setlists on this tour indicate the band had more time at other shows. Perhaps a hard curfew for a Tuesday night rock show prevented us from spending more time with the band.
Sleeping with Sirens holds a special place in my heart. My first time seeing the band was in 2015 at the Skyway Theater, where I was working as a photography intern. I credit that show as being one of the formative nights that told me to keep doing work like this.
The Used is also special to me; their first studio album was one of my earliest exposures to the scene. Although 7-year-old me might have been too young for songs like “Box of Sharp Objects,” it clearly left a lasting impression on me. “Taste of Ink” and their “Under Pressure” cover with My Chemical Romance are playlists mainstays for me.
With over two decades of music and history behind the group, it means a lot to see them still touring and putting out music.
Although the instrumentals felt strong, and the stage design with hundreds of flowers was beautiful, the performance was lacking a bit in the vocal department. Regardless, McCracken compensated and powered through with a mighty stage presence and passion.
It felt satisfying to see a prominent 2000s band tour alongside a prominent 2010s band that was so clearly inspired by them. The two coming together felt like a celebration of the genre and how far it has come. However, it would’ve been nice to see a larger emerging act come to help bring in new fans as well.
Overall, the night was a love letter to the scene. And while the audience was primarily “elder emos,” the energy was anything but elderly. Nevertheless, I was really grateful for the relatively early start and end times; most of us have jobs to get to the next morning.
Of all the nostalgia-filled tours to see, The Used and Sleeping With Sirens is absolutely one to put on the bucket list.