The Middle East Night Club in Cambridge, MA continues to be a venue that holds some of my most memorable shows. November 27th would be another show I would not soon forget either but I am still undecided if it is a good memory or a bad one. On one hand, I was seeing Twitching Tongues, Harm’s Way, Homewrecker, and Malice at the Palace all for the first time. On the other hand, ignorant Merrimack Valley Hardcore kids who treat a show like a turf war.
As much as I enjoy having a free-rein on how I write for Ghost Cult, I do not abuse it. However, I need to get something off of my chest about the local opener, Threshold. First and foremost, on a musical stand point, they have that very typical hardcore sound that really does not blow anybody away, but at least they do an alright job with it. I clapped at the end of their set and almost walked up to the lead singer to shake his hand. He looked a little angry about something, I was assuming stress of being the opener and having to pack up the gear quickly. Little did I know, him and his cohort of thug friends were in the process of jumping one of my friends over pit drama. Yes, fucking pit drama. My friend got his lip split open and another friend of mine jumped in just to separate the four white trash scumbags from delivering anymore cheap shots. If you are reading this and book shows or are an owner of a venue in the New England area, do not book Threshold from the Merrimack Valley area in MA. They do not attract a crowd nor do they keep a crowd in-house because they would rather jump them after a set. If you want to fight, fight like a man, not a stereotypical brocore pussy. You are a disgrace.
Moving on. Fuming Mouth was up next which has become one of my favorites from the Boston scene. They have that nice balance between crust, hardcore, and metal that attracts everybody to the show. If you get a chance to see these guys crank out a quick 20 minute set, get to the venue early to catch them!
Malice at the Palace was up next on this night. As I only dabble in the world of hardcore, I was not aware of what this band was like. After a few songs it became apparent to me that these guys had a strong Slayer influence (nothing wrong with that!) and still kept the hardcore soul in their sound via the vocalist. I certainly will be keeping my eyes open for the next time this group comes around.
Up next was Homewrecker to which I kicked myself pretty hard learning I missed them at Maryland Deathfest this year. The Ohio natives were one of the outliers in the lineup as they are a powerviolence band who cater to fans of crust punk, grindcore, and me. Watching the hardcore kids stand around during chaotic passages of songs, looking confused easily made my night. Don’t be an idiot like I was at MDF this year, catch Homewrecker the next time they are in your area.
One of my favorite found gems of this year, Harm’s Way, hit the stage next. To be completely transparent, this band was the whole reason I even wanted to come out to this show. Oh and of course the macho man fights continued during their set. Two fights broke out, the first actually cutting ‘Law of the Land’ short. The Cambridge crowd got a nice mix of newer tracks from Rust like ‘Amongst the Rust’ and ‘Cancerous Ways’. Some other tracks included opener, ‘Scrambled’ as well as one of my favorites, ‘Mind Control’. I will certainly be getting to more Harm’s Way shows in an effort to see more of them as eight songs was simply not enough for me.
Finally, Twitching Tongues made their way to the stage to close out the night. This was my first time ever listening to the headliners and I was not ready for the clean vocals. I guess it was just a complete polar opposite as to what I had been listening to all evening and as to what I was expecting. The lead singer kept the crowd engaged as everyone crowded the front through the entire set shouting lyrics back into the microphone. That, to me, makes you a successful live band and I gladly tip my hat to Twitching Tongues.
WORDS BY TIM LEDIN
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