With Roots Above… 10th Anniversary Tour: The Devil Wears Prada, Fit for a King, & ’68

By Samuel Stevens

With Winter and more snow on its way in the coming days, The Devil Wears Prada’s Winnipeg fans came to take their minds off the weather and stay indoors as the band brought the first leg of their With Roots Above and Branches Below 10th Anniversary Tour through The Garrick theatre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The night also featured the Texan Metalcore band Fit for a King as well as the Noise Punk band ’68, from Atlanta, Georgia.

Josh Scogin
’68 vocalist & guitarist, Josh Scogin. Photo by Samuel Stevens Photography.

Opening up the night was the Noise Punk duo, ’68. This marks the band’s first time in front of a Winnipeg audience. Although guitarist and vocalist, Josh Scogin has been to Winnipeg multiple times before, performing with his former band, The Chariot. ’68 was formed in late 2013 at the heels of the breakup of The Chariot. Performing a highly energetic six song set featuring songs off both the band’s albums, In Humor and Sadness and Two Parts Viper.

The band performed such songs as “Track 3G”, “Eventually We All Win”, and “Life Has Its Design” to name a few. One of the biggest takeaways I had from the entire performance by ’68 was how the set ended. While a guitar loop played over the PA system, band member Josh Scogin began to disassemble drummer Nikko Yamada’s drum kit piece by piece. Josh disassembled the kit starting with the floor tom, preceded by the hi-hat, the ride/crash cymbal, and last, but not least, the bass drum. Leaving the snare drum to finish the show. Not knowing much about this band walking into the show besides that the band features Josh Scogin from The Chariot, I was completely surprised by these two guys. They made a fan of me and it was clear they made many in the audience into fans as well. It was safe to say that ’68 were welcomed with a warm reception by the Winnipeg crowd inside The Garrick. The band’s set certainly left the crowd warmed up for the next act to brace the stage.

Fit for a King guitarist. Photo by Samuel Stevens Photography.

The next act to hit the stage was the Metalcore band, Fit for a King. Fit for a King are currently on the road in support of their fifth brand new studio album, Dark Skies. This was also the first time that Fit for a King have been to Winnipeg, as vocalist, Ryan Kirby said on stage. Although it may have been their first time to the city, Fit for a King performed songs off their two most recent albums, Deathgrip and Dark Skies. Performing a nine song set featuring a few songs like, “The Price of Agony”, “Deathgrip”, “Dead Memory”, and “Tower of Pain”. Just like ’68, it was more than clear by the reaction of the high intensity crowd that Fit for a King received a warm reception during their performance and Fit for a King continued to fire up the audience for The Devil Wears Prada.

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The Devil Wears Prada Vocalist/Guitarist, Jeremy DePoyster. Photo by Samuel Stevens Photography.

Now following both ’68 and Fit for a King, it was time for the headlining performance by the Dayton, Ohio Metalcore band, The Devil Wears Prada. With Roots Above and Branches Below has been labelled as one of the best albums released by The Devil Wears Prada by many fans. The With Roots Above and Branches Below 10th Anniversary tour date in Winnipeg marks the first time The Devil Wears Prada have been back to the city in five years. The Devil Wears Prada were last in the city on November 12th 2013 with support by the bands The Ghost Inside, Texas In July, and Volumes.

The Devil Wears Prada performed a massive seventeen song set which saw the band split their set up in two parts, the first portion of which contained five songs from various, yet more recent albums. Opening up the set with a cover of Julien Baker’s, “Sour Breath”, followed up by a few songs off the band’s albums, Dead Throne, Space EP, and Transit Blues. The band then proceeded to leave the stage for a brief moment before returning to the stage to begin the portion of the set where The Devil Wears Prada plays their album, With Roots Above and Branches Below in its entirety. There are many fan favourites on With Roots Above and Branches Below such as, “Dez Moines”, “Assistant to the Regional Manager”, “Big Wiggly Style”, “Danger: Wildman”, and “Wapakalypse”, all of which  were performed during the night. The encore only featured one song, “Mammoth” off of The Devil Wears Prada album, Dead Throne.

Overall, all three of the bands on the bill, The Devil Wears Prada, Fit for a King, and ’68, destroyed The Garrick’s stage. The show drew a pretty remarkable crowd at The Garrick with a near sell out. It’s unquestionable that the three acts will be back soon to play in front of a Winnipeg audience once again. Hopefully it doesn’t take The Devil Wears Prada another five years to make it to these parts of the globe. I additionally hope Fit for a King will make their way back to the city again very soon after embracing our cold weather for the first time. Lastly, I wish the same with ’68 and hope to see them back to the city again to destroy another stage.

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The Devil Wears Prada vocalist, Mike Hranica. Photo by Samuel Stevens Photography.

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