Night Riots takes on Dallas during its first headline tour

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An alt-indie rock band came through Dallas on Tuesday night on its first-ever headline tour, after building a big enough fan base from opening for several other bands since its founding in 2010.

Night Riots performed at the House of Blues Cambridge Room, which has a capacity of 250 people. There were about 100 people there, which left a lot of dancing room for eager fans.

There were several types of people who came to see the show, including a newly-wed couple still dressed in their wedding attire. This couple enjoyed the show along with college students, parents, other fans of the band, and Night Riots itself, who maintained constant enthusiasm and interacted with its crowd. Travis Hawley, lead singer of Night Riots, was impressed by how energetic the fans were.

“I just think that the energy is incredible here,” lead singer Travis Hawley said. “We’re always really well received here, everyone is down to have a good time. It’s a Tuesday night and people are just rocking out, you know?”

It’s been a long journey for Night Riots since the band released its debut song “Contagious” on the radio back in 2012. Since then, Night Riots opened for notable alternative-rock bands such as The Maine, The Hunna, Young Rising Sons and more. One fan spoke on how she discovered Night Riots while attending a concert for one of those bands.

“I discovered Night Riots two or three years ago when I saw them open for Young Rising Sons,” Dabney Cahill, a fan of three years, said.

The crowd jumped and screamed along to some fan favorites including “Contagious” and “All For You,” as well as some newer songs released this year, such as “On the Line” and “Colour Morning.” Hawley admitted that the band was pleasantly surprised by seeing how its fans already sang along to every word of its new songs.

The band’s most popular song “Breaking Free” had the absolute biggest crowd reaction. Fans screamed at the top of their lungs as soon as Night Riots played the opening notes. “Breaking Free” is a big success for Night Riots. The song has over 4 million streams on Spotify, and it was featured on hit Netflix TV show, “13 Reasons Why.” During the performance of the song, the audience sang along so loudly that Hawley put the microphone out to the crowd and let them sing the bridge on their own.

“You guys know how to bring it, this is freakin’ incredible,” lead singer Travis Hawley said, less than halfway through the set.

Night Riots included a drum solo in its set, which a lot of bands do, but it had a unique twist. The lights in the room were turned down and the drumsticks included multicolored lights. While this visual effect absorbed the attention of the audience, the band managed to surprise its fans yet again once the lights turned on, revealing that every band member was wearing a light-up skull mask.

Sara Coda from Silent Rival, the opener for the concert, shared that she and her band opened for Night Riots before in Colorado, the Pacific coast, and the UK, but going on a cross-country tour with the band has been a challenging yet rewarding experience.

“Getting to meet everyone after the show is one of the most rewarding parts of being on tour,” Coda said.

Silent Rival’s tour manager, Alec Cunningham, commented on how this is her first tour, and that it has been rewarding for her to travel and see the bands perform every night, but it has also been extremely fast-paced and challenging to multitask and work with various types of people.

The bands showed their appreciation for the audience by holding free meet-and-greets after the show. Fans formed long lines to meet and take pictures with the members of Night Riots and Silent Rival. After this tour, Night Riots plans to continue to solidify its fan base and grow along with them.

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