Amped Up Aperture » Amping up your concert experience with live photos and reviews!

SIXX_9 copy


Apocalyptica_9 copy


I am so stoked to see Apocalyptica back on tour in the U.S. Coming all the way from Finland, these guys are an incredible band to see live. They are comprised of three classically trained cellists, Eicca Toppinen, Paavo Lotjonen, Perttu Kivilaakso, and drummer, Mikko Siren. It’s amazing to me how they use their cellos, they throw them over their head, swing them around and head-bang just any other musician but their instruments are so much larger. This was my third time seeing them and my only complaint was they didn’t have a longer set.



Sixx A.M.

Founded by Motley Crue bassist and song writer, Nikki Sixx, “Sixx A.M.” made their way to TheSIXX_28 copyFillmore in Silver Spring for their final stop on their Modern Vintage tour.  This was a show I have been anticipating since the band announced their plans to play their first ever headlining tour. Since the success of their third full length album, “Modern Vintage” the guys were finally able to dedicate enough time to tour North America with plans of a world tour in 2016.  As they hit the stage, one by one the crowd cheered in anticipation. As the lights came to life, DJ Ashba and Nikki Sixx re-emerged playing the opening riff offSIXX_11 copytheir latest single, “Let’s Go!” Throughout the evening the guys played songs from every end of their discography. It was a nice mix for fans both old and new. One of my favorite things about the set was the relationship between Sixx and Ashba. These two were constantly messing with each other in a boy like spirit. As a fan it showed you a little insight into the light – hearted bond these two share, it brought you into their set and really showed off their personalities. But most of all, they were having fun, they were loving being on stage doing what they’ve always loved doing. This was such an incredible show from start to finish, I cannot wait to see what else these guys have in store.



Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

Photographs and Review by Christa Rae Settle

Every time I am at a Matt and Kim show, I am always blown away. Whenever they come to town, I never miss the chance to photograph this indie pop duo from Brooklyn, NY. Their energy on stage is unrivaled. We covered their second D.C. show at 9:30 Club on May 12th, 2015 – both of their D.C. shows are the only ones on this tour so far to sell out!

As my friend Sam accurately stated, when you leave a Matt and Kim concert, you leave wanting to experience it again. She is so right! A Matt and Kim concert is more than just a show where they perform songs off of their albums. It’s like you are at a giant party, and Matt and Kim are right there partying with you. As Matt said, “we are going up in the club on a Tuesday!”

Even with a sold out crowd, you have this sense of intimacy with Matt and Kim. They are so personable with the crowd and are constantly over sharing the best dirty stories and jokes. In between their songs, Matt and Kim love to play some of their favorite rap and hip-hop songs, and they even mix those songs into their music. It really gets the crowd hyped.

This tour was promoting their new album, New Glow, that released just last month. They performed a few songs off that album, like “Get It”, “Hoodie On”, and “Hey Now”. Of course, they performed many of their hits from their older albums – they even took it all the way back to their very first album, as Matt solely serenaded the crowd.

Matt had torn ligaments and a broken finger during this show from a show a few nights ago, from what he described as that he “…ate sh*t on stage in Denver” but he definitely didn’t let that affect the performance or slow him down – “not even 1%,” he said on an Instagram post from yesterday prior to the show. You’ll see in the photographs that he has two of his fingers gaff taped together.

Of course, a Matt and Kim concert wouldn’t be a Matt and Kim concert without Kim’s classic booty dances over the crowd. Every show, she has the crowd hold up their hands as she walks out into the crowd and dances over the crowd as they hold her up. Kim is a bad ass!

If you have not experienced a Matt and Kim concert yet, where have you been?! Get yourself to a Matt and Kim concert – stat!! They will be back on the East Coast in a month for Firefly Music Festival, and I can’t wait to party all over again with them!




Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

STP copy

Stone Temple Pilots


I came into this show, hesitant, I’ve always known STP as Scott Weiland, and when I’ve seen STP in the past with Scott, I thought they sounded phenomenal. So naturally I was curious and wanted to check them out now with Linkin Park frontman, Chester Bennington. They opened their set with one of my personal favorites, “Lounge Fly.” As Chester Bannington came on stage the first thing I noticed was the Scott Weiland dance. Chester seemed to mimic the whimsical movements of his predecessor. I think Chester did a great job of keeping the integrity for STP alive while still bringing a fresh perspective of the band. As the set progressed Chester would find any opportunity to come to the top of the stage to shake hands with those in the front row rocking out to every song. On top of it, they sounded great. I was nervous the band would sound like STP with Linkin Park but that wasn’t the case at all. I came into this show ready to be disappointed but instead I came out happy for STP and the direction they chose to go in. Though my biggest concern is how Chester is going to balance the workload of Linkin Park and STP, between new records and touring. Though, I have high hopes for them and I look forward to hearing their upcoming album. If you’re on the fence about seeing them, rest assure it’ll be a great show out of these guys.

Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

ITM_29 copy

Upon a burning body

UABB_1 copy The first time I saw Upon a Burning Body was this past summer on Van’s Warped Tour, I was blown away by the amount of energy they had. Vocalist, Danny Leal was all over the place, his powerful growls turned heads throughout the festival grounds. This show was no different. As they came out in their signature suits reading UABB, these guys absolutely destroyed the stage. Everyone who had come early was on their feet moving around with the Texas based band. It was really good to see these guys again especially in a more intimate setting.


Butcher Babies

BB_8 copy

 I absolutely love shooting these guys. Frontwomen, Hidi and Carla are so amazing when it comes to putting on a show for their fans. They always find a way to get in the crowd and keep everyone feeling involved. Though I don’t care for their music, they really have a powerful presence and a zero fucks given attitude. I think they’re a great band to check out, their whole set is a very unique experience.



In this moment

ITM_26 copy I try to check these guys out whenever they come around, I’ve watched their progression as they opened for Nonpoint back in 2010 in a club venue in Baltimore to now when they are headlining larger venues with a complete show. I think the biggest problem I have with this “band” is how it is not about the band at all. As everyone stands blacked out in the shadows on the sides of the stage, Maria Brink has a tent that doubles as a dressing room between each song, back up dancers, her own elevated stage and a headset. Everything is choreographed between her and her dancers, so much of the rock n roll element is stripped from their show. That being said, this show without question is one of the most theatrical out there. Maria know what she is doing, she keeps the crowd engaged in their set and waiting for more. It was evident by all the people dressed as Maria in the crowd just how many people they have impacted thus far in their career.  As always I am excited to see what else they have in store.



Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

SS_25 copy

SS_20 copyThis band suffered a terrible loss in 2012 with the unexpected passing of their founding vocalist, Mitch Lucker, and for about a year or so they were idle. Then in late 2013 announcing they were going to continue preforming and recording with former “All Shall Perish” vocalist, Eddie Hermida.  The first thing I noticed was how Hermida’s vocals meshed perfectly with Suicide Silence’s sound.  While they are definitely a different band with the lineup change, I think they do a good job of incorporating the old and the new in their show. Hermida had a tough job coming into a band under the circumstances but he has done a great job of paying tribute to Lucker while still moving forward with their music.  I loved the amount of energy they had on stage, everyone really took advantage of the space and moved flawlessly around one another. Im looking forward to seeing where these guys go in upcoming years.


Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

HU copy

HU_4 copyI have only seen Hollywood Undead a handful of times but whenever they come around I try to go out of my way to cover them. With six band members doubling as vocalists and backing vocals their sets are very high energy and a blast to watch. Hollywood Undead is currently on tour in support of their newest album, “Day of the Dead” which will be released later this month. They came out to their first single off that album titled, “Unusual Suspects,” as the music started one by one they came out flooding the stage. As they came out the first thing you notice is their signature masks, each one depicting their particular  HU_12 copystyle. One thing I love about shooting these guys is the chemistry they have on stage, everyone seems to bounce off of one another flawlessly, when one guy’s part ends the other one jumps right in and so on. During their synchronized portions of their songs, they are spot on. It blows me away how so many people can collaborate the way they do. They have an interesting juxtaposition of metal and rap that adds a great diversity to their music and their fan base. This was the perfect venue for them,  it was intimate enough that no matter where you were in the venue, you felt like part of the show. They put on a great show and I’m looking forward to catching them again later this year at Carolina Rebellion.

Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

KORN copy

Monster Energy Welcome To Rockville will make its triumphant return to Jacksonville’s Metropolitan Park celebrating its fifth anniversary. This is one of eight major rock festivals across the U.S. in association with the ever expending World’s Loudest Month.  I think these festivals are fantastic, featuring some of the biggest names in Rock N Roll, were keeping the rock community alive.  After the release of their much anticipated album, The Grey Chapter, Slipknot will be headlining the two day festival along side Marlyn Manson, Korn, Godsmack and Slash. With a line up like this I would be shocked if this year didn’t sell out.

Check out  for more information on ticket sales and group tickets.

Monster Energy Welcome To Rockville flyer with band lineup and venue information

New for 2015 is the Monster Energy Welcome To Rockville Tequila World, with a Mexican fiesta theme, featuring a wide range of tequilas, margaritas, tacos and more. Metalachi—the world’s first and only heavy metal mariachi band (—will keep the party rolling with three performances on the Tequila World stage each day. Admission to this area is free and open to those 21 and up.

Monster Energy Welcome To Rockville Tequila World flyer with  list of featured tequilas

Follow Welcome to Rockville online or on your smart phone at:

Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

10years copy

The Glorious Sons

GS_4 copyThis is a band I have just recently been turned on to and wanted to check them out while they were in town. I think they were an interesting fit on this bill, they don’t have the same sound as the other bands but they seem to pull from similar influences. These guys are still pretty new to the scene and it was quite obvious in their interactions with the crowd but that will come with time. One thing that really stood out to me was how spot on they sounded. Personally I preferred their live sound to what I had heard recorded, definitely a good quality to have especially in such a new band. While they still have a lot of growing to do, I’m excited to see where these guys go.

OtherwiseOtherwise_5 copy

I have a love hate relationship with this band, I have seen them quite a few times at both large festivals, and in smaller clubs but its always a toss up whether you’ll get a good show out of them or not. Don’t get me wrong their sound it pretty consistently on point but sometimes I feel a huge disconnect between the band and the crowd. Tonight was one of those nights. Frontman, Adrian Patrick will usually be the life of the show, getting in your face and making an effort to personally connect with people in the crowd. This night in particular he lingered towards the back of the stage more than normal and just seemed a little reserved. Guitarist and brother, Ryan Patrick really seemed to pick up the slack and be the life of the set.

10 Years

10years_8 copyEvery time 10 years comes to town I go out of my way to check them out. While these guys never have an over the top show with theatrics and light shows they are a very talented group of musicians. The last time I saw them was about a year ago around the corner from this particular venue where they did an acoustic set. I was blown away. This night they did a full electric set and featured a healthy mix of songs both old and new. Great to see these guys again and looking forward to seeing more of them soon!


Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe

Korn_25 copy

Every year Carolina Rebellion is one of our most anticipated shows. Every year this show seems to get bigger and bigger with more and more people taking notice.  In the past Carolina Rebellion has pulled massive names in the Rock N Roll world including, Shinedown, Evanescence, Alice in Chains, Limp Bizkit and Kid Rock. This year year is no exception. I think one of the most anticipated performance for myself and the whole Carolina Rebellion family is Korn. The last time they played Carolina was in 2012 and just before wrapping up their set JD made an announcement that they had a special guest joining them no sooner did former guitarist, Brian “Head” Welch appear on stage. It was a very emotional moment not only for the band but the crowd as well. I had chills for the rest of the night.

“Three years ago, we reunited with our brother Head on stage at Carolina Rebellion. Since then, we made a new album and toured the world together. And now we’re back to perform our first album in its entirety. Rebellion is going to be a really special show for us,” says Jonathan Davis of Korn.

If you are locals or making a road trip out of it, I can promise you, it is worth every second.



For more information on Monster Energy Carolina Rebellion, visit:

Back to TopEMAILPOSTFacebookPOSTTweetPOSTSubscribe