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All Time Low // Live @ Hard Rock Live // 9.28.23

Article and Photos by: Courtney Thomassen


During the first week of fall in Orlando, Florida, just steps away from the festivities of Halloween Horror Nights, All Time Low played their first show at Hard Rock Live in Universal Citywalk.

The Sound of Letting Go tour welcomed English singer-songwriter Lauran Hibberd as opener for her first ever US tour. Her infectious energy swept through the venue as Hibberd danced and high kicked around the stage. After performing a mix of originals and covers including “Honda Civic” and Gwen Stefani’s “Hollaback Girl”, Hibberd slowed things down with “I Suck At Grieving,” a song written after her father’s passing. It was her job to end on a sad note, she explained, but the other bands would cheer everyone back up.

Grayscale did their job of lifting the crowd’s spirits, kicking things off with their most recent release “Not Afraid To Die.” Their 30 minute set included “Dirty Bombs” and “Motown” off of 2021 album Umbra, along with some older tracks.

After hearing mostly music of the 2020’s then 2010’s from the previous artists, final opening act Gym Class Heroes took the self proclaimed “elder emos” in the crowd way back to the 2000’s with their 40 minute set. Right away vocalist Travie McCoy had the audience engaged, raising their peace signs and middle fingers along with the band during “Peace Sign/Index Down.” An onstage ASL interpreter was present for their entire set, adding a level of accessibility not usually built into this sized show. After paying tribute to late rapper Juice WRLD with a cover of his 2019 song “Robbery,” the first of three back to back classics brought out a side of the crowd not yet seen. “Cupid’s Chockehold,” “Stereo Hearts,” and “Billionaire” were all standouts that had the entire floor singing along.

As the final changeover began in preparation for the headliners, large screens presented fans with a QR code and one final chance to enter votes for a fan choice song before the set began. Once the lights went dark, a large LED riser and back screen lit up with a video of a radio. As the stations skipped around, snippets from each opening band could be heard before a voice introduced All Time Low and the band began to play. 2009 “Lost In Stereo” and “Damned If I Do Ya (Damned If I Don’t)” electrified the crowd right away, fans sang along and already crowd surfers were being caught at the barricade. The first new release came early on with “Modern Love” off of the 2023 album Tell Me I’m Alive, released only weeks before. Lauran Hibberd joined the band for “PMA” before the set slowed down with a stripped back piano version of “The Way You Miss Me.” Appropriately, fan favorite “Missing You” followed suit with its acoustic guitar. The crowd reached a new level during the iconic bridge, screaming loudly “F*** the world”. Vocalist Alex Gaskarth prefaced the next song and namesake of the tour “The Sound of Letting Go” by saying that was what their shows are for. Even on a Thursday night, fans can come together, leaving all problems they may be facing at the door, and share their joy and love for the music. Soon after, the time had come to reveal the fan chosen song. A computer game style animation appeared on the back screen, displaying the four song choices and announcing “Guts” as the winner. Unsurprisingly, since it was their pick, the crowd erupted as the 2011 track began. Two more crowd pleasers, “Weightless” and “Monster” followed to end the regular set.

After a brief break, the band reemerged to play three final songs. “Sleepwalking” kicked off the encore before a fan named Summer was brought out to help decide what the second song would be. In the second interactive portion of the night, Summer was presented with a large button that would randomly select a song to be played. It would be an understatement to say the crowd was happy with the pick when “Jasey Rae” appeared on the screen. One last song would close out the night, and to no one’s surprise it was 2007 hit “Dear Maria, Count Me In.” After a prolonged intro teased the crowd a bit, the opening line ripped through the floor as fans screamed and sang more than they had all night. Gaskarth made an effort to shake the hands of the crowd surfers that made their way to the front of the pit throughout the song before the final chorus faded into goodnights. All Time Low’s The Sound Of Letting Go tour continues its run on the west coast this fall.


Courtney Thomassen
After spending years as an avid fan of music and photography, my separate interests became a singular passion in the summer of 2021. Ever since that first concert post-lockdown, I have strived to capture the nights worth remembering. There is nothing that beats the rush of live music, but being able to relive that time through photographs sure comes close.