Brooke Nicholson | Arts & Entertainment Editor
Breaking Benjamin, the rock/metal band from Wilkes-Barre, Pa, has held a prominent position in within the rock genre since their debut album, “Saturate”, released back in 2002. With the release of several albums afterward, Breaking Benjamin would continue to dominate the rock and music charts with hit singles, such as “I Will Not Bow”, “The Diary of Jane”, and “Angels Fall”. The band has successfully released six studio albums, 3 Eps, and one compilation album over time, with their latest studio album “Ember” currently topping rock charts, debuting at number one on the alternative rock, top rock, and hard rock charts after its release on April 13th.
On top of recording a wildly successful new album, Breaking Benjamin has since been touring across the United States to bring their music to venues across the nation, as well as promote their newest music. On April 25th, Breaking Benjamin brought shook up The National in Richmond, VA with a truly unique concert experience.
The first thing fans would notice while pulling up and frantically looking for a place to park around the venue is the line that wrapped around the building and then for the next streets over. Once the doors opened at seven p.m., fans eagerly shuffled into the venue to get a spot closest to the stage as they could. Once eight p.m. rolled around, 10 Years graced the stage and hyped up the crowd for the main event. After 10 Years left the stage and a brief 15-minute grace period, the lights dimmed again, signaling for Breaking Benjamin’s turn.
White lights illuminated the stage as the beginning of one of their newest songs, “Red Cold River”, began playing. With the help of the crowd’s cheers, Breaking Benjamin’s frontman and lead singer, Benjamin Burnley, jumped out from backstage, officially kicking off the song. Burnley jumped back and forth from small platforms aligned along the front of the stage that doused the singer in red light. As soon as the first chorus was over, the white sheet behind the band fell, revealing the cover of the new album that had just dropped a few weeks prior.
“I Will Not Bow” followed up the first song, and fans couldn’t help but sing along to the older but still prominent tune to one of their most popular songs to date. Huge fog canons aligned the floor in front of the stage, accompanying songs by completely dousing the room and different points of the night. The most notable and exciting part of the show comes after the first set of songs, the lead singer giving the spotlight to the drummer sitting atop a W-shaped platform towards the back of the stage for a solo performance and light show.
The venue was always shaking and there was never a moment that slowed down. The use of lights, fog, and energy gave the crowd a truly memorable concert experience that they will never forget.
Breaking Benjamin’s new album “Ember” is available now.