Rise Against

Rise Against was undoubtably the band that got me into punk, as well as the band to introduce me to more bands than ever before.  i’ve seen Rise Against a whopping 3 times live, 2 while headlining their own tours, and 1 time headlining Riotfest, a 2 day punk music festival.  Rise Against does a good job putting quality lyrics into strong riffs and punk sounds, and has a significant amount of variation between their slower acoustic songs, like “Swing Life Away” or “Hero of War”.  Rise Against certainly has a heavier side as well especially seen in songs like “State of the Union” and “Rumors of my Demise have been Greatly Exaggerated”.  Rise Against has a strong tendency to push their songs very close to the political and moral issues revolving around 1st world culture, and these references can be seen in the majority of their work.  i would certainly recommend Rise Against for the people that are looking to make the leap from Rock to Punk

The easiest way to explain a hardcore crowd is just to separate the separate groups of people.  You’ve got your guys who get drunk as the bartender will let them get and then they just run into the crowd like there bowling, there are the head bobbers that occupy the majority of the crowd maybe like 50-60% depending on the crowd, then there are the people that jam up against the stage/rail and cling for dear life, and you’ve got the moshers/crowd surfers.  For the most part all the groups are relatively peaceful, with the exception of the drunks that are bowling.  The moshers are usually good-natured and most will help someone up if they fall (no one wants to accidently trample someone).  The head bobbers just do their thing quietly and watch the band, they are usually the type that are genuinely interested in the music more than they are the atmosphere.  The rail jammers are usually similar to the head bobbers with the exception that they are willing to stand in unbearable heat and get really cozy with lots of people with the same idea as them, maybe for the chance to shout profanity into the microphone if the front man hops down to get intimate with the crowd.

All in all, if you are interested in checking out a hardcore show I recommend it completely.  They’re a lot of fun especially if you are familiar with the band or basic crowd dynamics.  Good luck and happy moshing.

Punk Concerts

Many people upon thinking, or hearing about Punk, and Hardcore Punk music believe that the genre is reserved for angry adolescent males.  And quite frankly I believe that they are on to something there- but I think that there is more to it than just that.  Today, I had a nice talk with my professor, Bill, who told me the story of what happened when he went to Vans Warped Tour, and seemingly out of curiosity got too close to a mosh pit.  As he explained, he ended up getting kicked in the head or something of that nature.  He seemed kind of baffled as to why this happened or why someone would think to just do something like that.  I’m certainly not an expert on crowd dynamics of different types of music; one thing I know is how a hardcore crowd operates.

Upon A Burning Body, Heavy and Angry

i think that concerts are one of the best venues to get introduced to new bands.  not only do you get a glimpse of their music, usually only about 45 minutes worth for a opener and maybe twice that for a headliner.  but more importantly you get a good look at a bands stage presence, how they look and interact with a crowd.  like most bands that i discover at concerts, i went to see Born Of Osiris, and Upon A Burning Body was one of the opening acts.  they came on stage wearing grey tuxedos with sport coats, hair either slicked back or in fadoras, vests and all.  they start playing and their sound is beyond heavy and the riffs and drums are beyond heavy.  the stage presence delivered by Upon a Burning Body is without a doubt very good, especially in how they dress, and how they are mannered being very ironic. Upon A Burning Body is not hardcore, but a deathcore band from Texas.  as they play the crowd goes insane, the strong growling lyrics fit the sound well.  they have a fairly consistent sound, with my personal favorites being Sin City, Once Upon a Time In Mexico, and Texas Blood Money, from their Red.  White. Green. album.  i saw Upon A Burning Body again at vans warped tour, and this time, knowing their music was significantly more intense, as well as having a larger crowd.  Anybody that like heavy metal and deathcore should definitely give Upon a Burning Body a chance.

 

The Ghost Inside- heavy and powerful

the first time i had heard The Ghost Inside i was absolutely blown away.  i saw them live at Mojoes in Joliet, a small intimate venue in a small sketchy town known mainly for its maximum security prison.  they were headlining their Get What You Give album tour, and i saw them mainly for the opening act, Rotting Out.  needless to say, The Ghost Inside absolutely blew all the openers out of the water completely- their sound is both very distorted and heavy, but it also was very crisp and precise especially when listening to the percussionist.  they are definitely a hardcore band, but they have some more melodic and slow songs, such as “White Light”, but without a doubt they exceed in producing strong hardcore riffs in combination with powerful lyrics, and fast and very very precise drums, manned by Andrew Tkaczyk.  songs like “Test Limits”, “Through The Cracks”, and my personnel favorite, “The Lion War”.  all of these songs are fast and heavy- as well they all contain brutal breakdowns.  the Ghost Inside is absolutely sitting high on my list.  if you are into hardcore at all, do yourself a favor and check out their stuff.

La Dispute – my latest infatuation

pandora radio is one of my favorite tools for discovering new (to me) bands, sounds or genres all together.  a few days ago i was listening to some pandora station and La Dispute came on.  it was one of there slower songs, “I See Everything”  i was instantly hooked in the poetic style the lead singer, Jordan Dreyer, uses in telling the stories involved within La Disputes songs.  multiple albums later- the sound is rather unique in the emphasis put onto the vocals.  the song lyrics generally read like poetry, very smooth and fluid.  although not musically a hardore band, but rather post-hardcore, they have a very heavy sound.  but the weight is not in the powerchords or oppressive drums, but in the power of the spoken word. Additional songs that show the versatility of La Dispute would be “Damaged Goods” and “The Last Lost Continent”  i encourage everyone to look up La Dispute.

 

well this is it

without a doubt music has been one of the strongest influences in my life. not just music, i might add, but more specifically hardcore punk.  there is something intoxicating about a heavy riff, so loud you feel it in your chest, or the thump of a long double bass fill.  there is really not quite anything like a hardcore show- moshing crowdsurfing and stage diving- along with hundreds or thousands that feel the same way you do about the world.   angry, frustrated, whatever just blowing steam with a common interest in music.    this blog is for anyone interested in hardcore, or just curious.  feel free to comment your favorite hardcore or punk bands id love to check out some new bands!

thanks- bryan.