It's very rare when full album shows live up to the expectation - partially because these are the kinds of specific shows that celebrate albums that are usually so beloved, the bar is set impossibly high.
AFI proved to be the exception, offering an arena-sized spectacle in celebration of their seminal Sing the Sorrow release. Taking centerstage at The Kia Forum in Inglewood, the capacity crowd got to experience the live iteration of an album that has proven formidable for generations of fans spanning musical preference and background.
The album served as an important shift in the trajectory of the band, marking their major label arrival on Dreamworks Records – transitioning from their independent run on Nitro Records. Sing The Sorrow became a fixture on rock music radio with the singles like “Silver and Cold” and “Girl’s Not Grey” permeating in the greater culture of alternative music and launching Davey Havok into a new stratosphere.
Two decades later, the album resonates as relevant as ever, with Saturday night's festivities serving as evidence.
Living up to the billing, the album was performed sequentially, in full. Many of the selections included in the setlist were performed for the first time in years, with essentials like "The Leaving Song Pt. II" and "This Time Imperfect" last performed live some six years ago.
The most endearing moment of the evening however was also the most unscripted. Diving into one of the band's biggest hits from the album in "Girl's Not Grey", frontman Davey Havok called for the set to halt upon noticing that someone in the audience was hurt. Prioritizing his people over the performance, one of the most powerful portions of the set to boot, the move was that of a consummate professional and more importantly, a good human being.
The audience roared in response, offering their acknowledgement of the audible, which only made the hit most emphatic when the band was able to resume.
Executing the album live with a balance of big room energy and a sense of intimacy despite the more than 17,000 fans in attendence, Sing the Sorrow at twenty galvanized generations of fans for all the reasons. Tnoght, AFI asserted that important albums supersede the standard shelf life and will never go out of style.
See the complete gallery of images included flicks from Jawbreaker and Chealsdea Wolfe's supporting sets below.
All images were captured by Shaun Vizzy.