The annual melodic hardcore party is back for another round and this year the Impericon tour is packing serious heat with the likes of Terror, Comeback Kid and Stick To Your Guns. But can the bands live up to their live reputations? This is what we learned...
Stick To Your Guns’ Melodic Moments Are Their Highlight
On a stacked bill of hardcore bands Stick To Your Guns certainly hold their own with plenty of big mosh moments in their arsenal but it’s their melodic side that is their biggest strength. In part it’s their use of space that creates this, so when those moments do come they can’t help but stir a sense of hope within the aggression. Clean vocals may be sparsely used by the five-piece but when they are, they are utlilised to stunning effect with the posi messages behind Amber, Against Them All and We Still Believe being something that you can’t help but throw yourself into 100%.
Comeback Kid Prove How Great Hardcore Can Be
At times it’s easy to become disenfranchised with the hardcore scene, a ready-made list of clichés that are trotted out by bands and fans alike, be it breakdowns or snapbacks, that make all that talk of honour etc seem quite redundant. Tonight though Comeback Kid prove how important they are to hardcore with songs, and songs alone. Old favourites such as False Idols Fall sit equally well alongside material off this year’s Die Knowing, all capturing the same sense of anger and frustration and giving the perfect outlet to vent this via plenty of finger points and shouting along. It all climaxes with an incredible rendition of Wake The Dead, which on the back of tonight holds a very serious claim to be one of the best songs hardcore as a genre has given the world.
Terror Run A Serious Risk Of Being A Hardcore One Trick Pony
After two performances from bands that have taken the hardcore blueprint, added melody and pull a serious emotional punch in the process, Terror don’t have the best start. With a notably thinner crowd, there is only one emotion the LA five-piece deal in and that is being very angry, and only one mode they operate in which is CRUSH EVERYTHING. They may be hardcore royalty but there is a very real concern that this is a band with nothing new to offer on a bill of hardcore bands taking the template and adding new ideas. The set starts off feeling like it is going to be little more than an excuse for guys that spend their pocket money on creatine to wallop each other around.
But Hey, If It Ain’t Broke Don’t Fix It
It might not be big or clever, but as the set goes on Terror demonstrate exactly why they are held in such high regard within the hardcore scene and why they belong at the top off this bill. Sounding positively devastating, they prove that sometimes all that is needed in hardcore is big riffs, a sense of bounce, breakdowns and an awful lot of aggression to get the job done. Stomping around stage with intent, the likes of You’re Caught and Defenders Of The Faith may be meat and potatoes hardcore but it is the best example of it delivered by a band who undoubtedly live and die hardcore.
You Can Have A Hardcore Show Anywhere, Especially If Scott Vogel Is Involved
This isn’t the most obvious, or ideal venue for a hardcore show but with frontman Scott Vogel leading the charge it doesn’t take long to make it the most messy of gigs. A barrier does little to deter those involved with Vogel stage diving, throwing his mic into the crowd, and repeatedly demanding people ‘jump on heads’. It inspires chaos to the point where the scenes by the end of the set are bonkers. Something that’s close to resembling an all-out brawl in the pit, while people pop up and fly off the stage left right and centre, while the one and only security man looks on and considers early retirement.