Red performed a quick stop before the start of their Self-Inflicted Tour at Sacred Heart University’s Edgerton Center in Fairfield, CT on Thursday September 26th as part of the school’s Christian Music series, but it was also open to the general public. There was a small mixed audience of roughly 150 people that ranged in ages from the expected university students to people in their fifties. It was a seated venue however there was a large space before the stage that became an area for everyone to stand and enjoy the show. The three foot stage height also ended up coming in handy for a personable intimate experience with Red.
When Red first came out everyone stayed in their seats in a traditional go with the masses format. After the first song Mike, the singer, wasn’t having any of that. He invited everyone to come up to the stage resulting in the usual mad rush for preferable spots. At first I was worried about the energy of the crowd and how that would affect the band. However I need not have worried. Everyone in the band still absolutely gave it their all and made it all that much more special interacting with the crowd often, singing up close and personal, grabbing hands and also acknowledging those further out in the crowd. Mike was still his usual maniac self, never staying still, running across the stage, jumping off stage props, crashing to the floor and goofing around with his band mates. There were long between song changes, but as the crowd grew more pumped up the smoother transition became. Joe still preformed his drum solo incorporating his usual dance beats, while encouraging the crowd to give feedback which they readily gave. The lead guitarist, Anthony also often came right out to crowd, barely a hairs width away from the fans, interacting enthusiastically while performing his superb guitar solos. Given the venue, there was occasional religious commentary, from both Mike and Randy, the bassist, but it was not overwhelming and contributed to a positive, feel good atmosphere.
The setlist was a nice blend of energy, hits, promotion of the new cd Release the Panic and a few songs for the diehard fans. In no particular order some of the set consisted of Damage, Perfect Life, Lost, So Far Away, Die For You, Let Go, Death of Me, Hold Me Now, Feed the Machine, Release the Panic, Mystery of You, Breathe Into Me. At the end of the set the band members came to the edge of the stage handing out the usual guitar picks and drumsticks, but also continued to make the personal connection of shaking a large portion of the fans hands as well.