Date: November 1st, 2014
Venue: Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton
Line-up: Terror / Stick To Your Guns / Comeback Kid / Obey The Brave / More Than A Thousand / No Bragging Rights / Capsize
The air is full of band t-shirts, Air Max Nikes and the sense that carnage is about to unfold in the best way possible. Yes, it’s that time of year where Impericon puts on another yearly tour which blows fans away. This year’s line-up is no exception, but holds a lot more of a hardcore flavour than in previous years. Having had headliners such as Emmure, Suicide Silence and even Parkway Drive lead the march before, this tour has taken a more stripped down approach, but for the better.
With an early start of 6:00pm, it’s the job of Capsize (***) to take to the stage and open the night up. The crowd stand still and take them in as they play through a lot of new material off their new album, ‘The Angst In My Veins’, which receives a good reception and a few people screaming the words back at them. Finishing off with ‘I’ll Take The Blame’, the band see a lot more involvement from the fans to kick the night off well.
Up next are melodic hardcore quintet No Bragging Rights (****), who have a lot more exuberance about them and show off that they can keep the catchy rhythms as well as sections for the crowd to two-step and mosh about. Mixing a lot of stuff from both ‘Cycles’ and ‘The Concrete Flower’ albums helps cement them as one of the top bands of the night, as well as the inspirational talks from Mike Perez about mental illness and suicide before key songs like ‘Hope Theory’.
Changing the genre loop, More Than A Thousand (**) definitely have the sound and the impression that they’re here to party, but throughout their set it becomes apparent that the music and tone isn’t sitting well. The instrumentation falls flat and, although with a packed room and a few people jumping like rabbits, it just isn’t their night.
It’s hard to see how many bands could pull it back, but as soon as Obey The Brave (*****) hit the stage it’s chaos all around. ‘Raise Your Voice’ crashes through the speakers straight from the get go and the crowd start moshing and dancing. Shorter songs such as ‘Short Fuse’ definitely have the bigger reactions and crowd participation, but it comes straight into fruition when ‘Get Real’ closes set. Alex Erian puts all of his heart and soul into the set, with every stomp thundering through the floor and making a statement.
Then comes forth the rotating acts. First to show their faces are Comeback Kid (****), to which the crowd surfers come in tow. Being the most punk influenced hardcore band out of the line-up, it keeps them going through and through spanning their entire discography, from tracks back from their beginning, such as ‘All In A Year’, right up to the newer songs like ‘Wasted Arrows’, which both get the reactions they deserve. Andrew Neufeld gets involved with the crowd, giving the microphone to the audience for them to give their hearts and souls right back.
Just when you feel the bar is set, Stick To Your Guns (*****) come out and lay waste to everyone who stands before them. Coming straight out to ‘Empty Heads’, the crowd immediately begin spinning as well as spin kicking, before flowing straight into ‘Amber’, exploding the voices of everyone in The Slade Rooms. Jesse Barnett is an inspirational man on stage, whether it be with his vocal talents or his speeches before slamming into their new song, ‘Nobody’, which shows off the bass stylings of Andrew Rose.
Finally, we come to the main act of the night, one of the biggest names in hardcore today, Terror (*****). They accelerate straight into first gear with ‘Your Enemies Are Mine’ and ‘Stick Tight’, getting everyone involved with high fives and crowd surfers. Security do a great job with the crowd and let people get onto the stage and dive back into the audience. During ‘Hard Lessons’, Scott Vogel let a fan come onto the stage and scream the lyrics, having their chance of being a hardcore vocalist before he stage dives, clearly having the time of his life. Terror are one of those bands that let the crowd be themselves and make sure they have the best time possible, which is how it should be. Ending with ‘Keepers Of The Faith’, the band end this date of the tour run on a very positive note and prove that hardcore still lives through the veins of the bands and the fans.
Written by Josh Palmer