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Issues, Polyphia, Sleep Token, Lil Aaron in New Haven

"NEW HAVEN, CONN. — The dichotomy between walking through the Yale Campus one minute and being inside Toad’s Place the next was almost comical.

Though I had never listened to Sleep Token prior to this event, their performance gained them a fan. A combination of metaphorical lyrics, dynamic sounds, and a sense of anonymity all contributed to the mesmerizing performance. Lil Aaron, though primarily a songwriter (Liam Payne, Kim Petras, Blackbear, etc.), put on a very energetic and entertaining performance. He interacted with the crowd and the fans seemed to enjoy him set even through the genre difference.

Per usual, Polyphia put on a flawless set. Every note was choreographed and played with such intense musicality it made it hard to look away, even without a vocalist. The instrumental progressive metal group has a rich history of using guitar for various parts in each song, making them groove like no other band today.

The venue was packed for Issues, with the majority of the crowd ready to ignore the “No Moshing” signs posted around the venue. As soon as the first note in “Here’s To You” hit, people were going wild and only briefly calmed down between songs. Tyler Carter, though losing his voice, is a pro at working the crowd and had the crowd helping him out. The energy never stopped on the stage even though it is towards the end of the tour and they must be exhausted. The atmospheric and lighting design for their set was executed extremely well and made every “seat” in the venue a great spot to be."

Sleep Token:

Lil Aaron:



Review and photographs by Leigh Ann Rodgers


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