Just a few short months after opening for Sleeping With Sirens in San Francisco, State Champs made their way back to the Bay this week on their headlining tour for Around the World and Back (2015). Despite touring all around the world and continually growing in popularity, State Champs managed to make everyone in the audience feel like they were a part of a very special show.
Don Broco, an alternative rock band from England, opened the show and successfully pumped the crowd with energy, especially with their song “Automatic.” There really is no standing still while you’re listening to Don Broco.
The second opener, With Confidence, was undoubtedly the perfect band to play for a State Champs crowd. These boys from Sydney, Australia played Warped Tour this past year with some of the biggest bands in the scene, including State Champs. They are also in the running for Alternative Press Music Awards’ Best New Artist Video for their song “Voldemort.” This band will definitely be making waves this year. Even amongst this small crowd, With Confidence had its own cheering section, complete with an Australian flag.
Against the Current, a pop rock band from New York, hit the stage and ignited screams from the crowd. It was clear that a lot of fans in the audience had been waiting anxiously for this half of the show. Chrissy Costanza (lead vocalist) ran to stage left and belted the lyrics to “Blood Like Gasoline.”
What really made this show special was how intimate it felt. In between sets, band members were walking around or hanging out by the merch table to meet fans, take photos, and just talk.
After 3 great opening acts, State Champs jumped onto the stage with their song “Remedy.” Derek DiScanio (lead vocalist) opened the show with words that every concert-goer loves to here – “we’ve got a lot of songs to play for you tonight.” Midway through their set, State Champs invited Chrissy to join them in performing an acoustic version of “Around the World and Back” for the first time ever live. After wrapping up this fan-favorite, Derek said, “Now I don’t think I’ll ever forget this show.” The sentiment was definitely mutual.
During the two-song acoustic set, Ryan Scott Graham (bassist) and Tony Diaz (guitarist) hosted an Instagram live stream from backstage, a ritual which has continued for the following two shows.
Not only did State Champs premiere “Around the World and Back” at the UC Theater, but they also lengthened their set by adding another song to their usual encore – “Critical.” Although this was the tenth stop, Berkeley definitely set the tone for the rest of this tour. As State Champs prepares to release the deluxe edition of their album on May 5th, there are sure to be more surprises along the road.
Derek shared that the band will be heading back into the studio promptly after this tour is over, so it won’t be long until we see these guys tearing up the Bay again.
Article and Photos by Desiree Diaz