Written By | Jon Freed
Set it Off are no strangers to anyone who has kept up with the pop-punk scene in Atlanta over the past decade. The Tampa, Florida natives made a name for themselves amongst the underground pop punk show goers in 2012, frequently playing smaller shows in the Atlanta suburbs as well as embarking on bigger tours and hitting the stage in Atlanta. Now touring off of their newest record, Midnight, Set it Offʼs return to The Masquerade couldnʼt have been more well-received.
The sold-out show started with the supporting rap-rock act L.I.F.T. taking the stage. Their unique brand of pop rock/rap fusion immediately commanded the attention of the crowd, with their catchy hooks and instrumentals giving show-goers a fun and energy-charged setting to jump up and wave their hands in the air.
Maintaining the energetic precedent set by L.I.F.T., California emo-punk mainstays Super Whatevr hit the stage and immediately had everyone’s attention. Their 2018 record, Never Nothing, is full of dynamic songs with fun and catchy riffs, and they delivered them perfectly —not a single person in the crowd was standing still. When With Confidence hit the stage, the crowd was already teeming with anticipation for the headlining act. With Confidence immediately built on the existing energy of the night, breaking out fast-paced pop punk anthems that had everyone pointing their fingers in the air and singing along. Their commanding stage presence and energetic performance left nothing to be desired as the crowd prepared for Set It Off to take the stage.
Before With Confidence had even finished loading their gear off of the stage, the crowd had already begun chanting, “SET IT OFF! SET IT OFF!” These chants continued throughout the duration of the 25 minute changeover period, with intermittent collective screams whenever Set it Offʼs guitar tech came on stage to test levels and sound check. Finally, the lights dropped and a giant LED display behind the drum set flashed a timer, while a computerized voice came over the speakers, announcing it was “two minutes to midnight.” The clock began counting down, and for the entire two minutes prior to Set it Off taking the stage, the crowd could not contain their excitement. When the timer finally expired and Set it Off hit the stage, the room was filled with screams so deafening they were likely heard four blocks away on the Georgia State University campus.
Throughout their entire setlist, Set it Off built off of the crowdʼs energy, opening with the third track off of Midnight, “Lonely Dance,” then transitioning into crowd favorite “Uncontainable” from their 2016 release Upside Down. They continued their set with various songs from Midnight, tastefully peppering in classics from earlier releases and even throwing in a brief cover of N*Syncʼs “Itʼs Gonna Be Me.” Towards the middle of their set, they broke out a drum solo and began remixing popular songs such as Ariana Grandeʼs “7 Rings” and “Toxic” by Britney Spears.
By the end of their set, the crowdʼs energy had not subsided one bit, and when Set It Off walked off-stage, the crowdʼs relentless screams and chants left them no option but to return for an encore. Their two-song encore started with “Partners in Crime” from 2012ʼs Cinematics, and they finally closed with the crowd favorite and long- anticipated “Wolf in Sheepʼs Clothing” from their successful 2018 release Duality.
From start to finish, Set it Off did not disappoint the sold-out crowd one bit, living up to the legacy they have created in Atlanta over their tenure.