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Two (Three) Birds With One Stone: Muse, Evanescence, & Waterparks

Updated: Jan 10

This may be two weeks late, but I'm still gonna write it! Honestly one of the greatest days of my life was seeing three insanely awesome and talented bands all in one day. I've learned to just accept if things work out, and if they don't, they don't, and that's exactly how I felt April 16th. Everything just fell into place perfectly!

I bought tickets to see Muse and Evanescence late September of 2022, but I got two so I could drag my best friend to go along just so I wouldn't be alone. I was worried about how things would play out because I didn't want to make her pay for a concert she didn't really care about, but I also didn't want to be out like $65, you know? About a month later, a little bit into my first term of college, I met a new friend and one of the first things we talked about was out mutual love for Muse. It was just really nice, and I was much happier knowing that ticket would go to someone who actually cared about them. That was part one of things falling into place.

Part two was this: I discovered this crazy band called Waterparks in January of this year through a podcast that the lead singer hosts, but I only found it because there was an episode featuring Kellin Quinn (I guess I can thank Kellin for all of this). Loved the podcast, wasn't the hugest fan of their music once I listened a bit, but I did like the few singles that were out from their upcoming album, Intellectual Property. I saw that they were coming to Portland to tour the new album as well, but I knew I couldn't validate buying tickets because I didn't know enough of their music. One of my school friends is really into making films, and he asked me to be the cameraman for a school project he was working on with another friend. I agreed of course, and I go to help them, and his friend is wearing a Waterparks sweatshirt. This how our converstaion went:

"I like your sweatshirt!" I told her (Double Dare era by the way).

"What, you like Waterparks?" She said back.

"Kind of, I like the podcast and the newer stuff."

So anyways, after that we became Waterparks buddies. She showed me all the pictures and videos she had from seeing & meeting them before which I thought was actually the coolest thing in the world. A week or two later, the band annoucnes they're doing a string of in-store acoustic performances and meet and greets, except I didn't realize that's what the announcement meant. They didn't actually explain that any of that was happening. Here's proof:

(The flyer)

(The caption)

Naturally, I just assumed that that's when physical copies were coming into certain record stores since it didn't specify. I happened to be sitting in the coffee shop in my school's dining hall, and my film friend and Waterparks friend just happened to come over and sit with me. We got to talking about the announcement, and she was like,

"I don't know if I can go to the in-store, I really want to but I'm already going to the Portland show." I was confused because I didn't know why she'd go all the way there just to get a vinyl or something.

"What do you mean?" I asked her, not piecing it together.

"They're doing another acoustic show, like the one I showed you pictures of?"She said, and then it kind of clicked. I looked at the date they were coming, and lo and behold, it just coincidentally fell on the same day I'd be in Portland for the Muse/Evanescence concert, and the times didn't overlap at all. Once again, it all just fell into place perfectly.That became one of those days that really showed me that when things work out, they will work out. But, I wanted to go to the actual concert really bad because I LOVED the new album, but it was on a Monday, I was coming home from Seattle the day before, no one that listened to them was available to go with me, so that just didn't work out, and I accepted it. It's something totally random that I learned a lot from, I'm happy about it.

Okay, now for the actual shows. The day started with an extremely long drive through the passes into Portland for Waterparks. We waited in line at Music Millenium (insanely cool record store by the way) for like two hours, maybe one and a half, and got shuffled in and around the rows of cds into a standing spot to watch the band. The store also gave us signed cds/vinyls which you had to purchase for entry. They were up on the second floor in kind of a lookout spot, just awesome because everyone had a good view of them, unless you were in the back of the line. Those people got stuck under the ledge so they coudn't see anything :(

Atrocious lighting in that place too, sheesh. They only sang four songs in the acoustic, but it still awesome. And Otto was also kind of hidden in the corner from my angle but that's okay. Awsten talked equally as long as he did sing which was hilarious, he's got quite the personality! After they sang, everyone got a chance to meet them and take pictures. I honestly remember very little of my conversation with them because every time I meet a celebrity I blank, but I know I told them I was glad they were doing that show since I couldn't go to the actual concert. I'm so happy I got to hug them. And Otto is a lot shorter in real life, I had to slouch a bit in our pics (lol). Awsten also grabbed my shoulder and looked me right in the eye before I walked away and was like, "Be safe, okay?", and it was the sweetest thing a celebrity has ever said to me because it was just so sincere. Hah. We took our pictures and that was it. Lucas kept taking pictures of Jawn and now I have like no good pictures hugging Otto and I'm upset about it. Boo.

Now for the whole reason I was in Portland! I want to start this by saying I don't think I would've bought tickets if it had been one or the other, but because it was Muse AND Evanescence, I had to do it. I literally had no choice. Literally. (I said literally twice for emphasis not because I'm stupid). Amy Lee is someone who I look up to so much, not only for fronting a rock band, but for her bold style and incredibly powerful voice, and of course her lyricism. Evanescence is a legendary band with music that really shook the foundation of standard rock music. As for Muse, I will never get over Matt Bellamy's voice and talent on the guitar. I'm going to do a post one of these days on random memories I associate with different bands, and one I'm going to include is my experience with Muse.

I remember the first time I ever listened to them. I was in my senior year government class shuffling some random Spotify playlist to find new music, and Uprising came on. I can feel the power that song had over me to this day, and the full hyper fixation of listening to it on repeat and forcing my friends to as well. When I was touring the college I go to now, I was obsessed with the whole Black Holes and Revelations album, specifically Knights of Cydonia. Matt's harmonies had a very big chokehold on me. Anwyays, it just aged well that I ended up going to this show.

We got some food at Washington Square after Waterparks before heading out to the Moda Center, and the weirdest thing happened at the mall. I've never seen real cause and effect with my own eyes before, but I watched this young brat spill his drink all over the floor in front of the trash can and just giggle and walk away. A minute later, an employee walked out of what I'm guessing was the break room and just totally slipped and smacked hard on the ground. I felt so bad for the poor girl and it made want to strangle that kid even though he was long gone. Moving on.

They had a lot of merch to choose from, I ended up getting a shirt from each band and my friend did the same but with posters. Our seats were actually horrible and so far away, but once the music started I didn't even care. When Evanescence played My Immortal, it genuinely made me tear up. What a song to hear live, I'm so grateful for that experience. Broken Pieces Shine, Going Under, and Bring Me To Life were some of my other favorites. The production of their set was flawless, the lights were so fun, Amy's outfit made me want to fall to my knees, and of course her vocals live were even more haunting than in the studio versions. Speaking of haunting, I was sick to my stomach that they didn't play Haunted. That is my all time favorite Evanescence song AND THEY DIDN'T PLAY IT. So disappointing. Still a set that I'll never forget. Here's some crappy quality videos.

Broken Pieces Shine

Going Under

My Immortal

Bring Me To Life

Muse absolutely ripped my socks off and threw them out. My socks were GONE. GONEEEEE. They opened with Will of the People, which I'll admit, was not one of my favorites, but I've found that I like it so much more after hearing it live. The band came out wearing the shiny masks that are all over the album advertisments and lore, so that was dope, and Matt was doing a little dance when he was playing guitar. The three songs that blew me away the most were Knights of Cydonia, Kill or Be Killed, and Plug in Baby (with Psycho as a close fourth). I've never been to a concert so theatrical in the way of its progression, the on-stage props, adherence to the theme throughout the band's outfits, purposeful lighting, the the build up of some rock solid lore. They showed short videos of the story of the masked people resisting and being taken down by a higher power, then progressing into the reveal of a huge replica of the silver-mask dude on stage.

Sorry for the horrendous image quality, perks of having an iPhone 8! Overall, just great planning and execution, I'm surprised everthing went so smoothly with the amount of different stuff they had going on each show. Props to them for that! It was such a great concert, and I was absolutely boogeying to You Make Me Feel Like It's Halloween. What a song and what a live performance of it. I'm attaching some more crappy videos, enjoy!

Will of the People


Plug In Baby

I'm so grateful that I continuously get awesome opportunuties like this, I love concerts and I love music so I couldn't be happier about the progression of that day. Next concert is Yeah Yeah Yeahs in June so it'll be a while until the next show post, but I hope to be putting together other posts in between that (and maybe some interviews!). Thanks for giving me a few minutes of your time, I appreciate anyone who chooses to use their eyeballs to read my fangirly concert reviews. Hah. Have a fantastic day and stream Will of the People by Muse!!




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