Photos by David Rubene
It has been a week of non-stop shows. Each one seemed to be a bit better than the last and I even found a new love for bluegrass and jam band music. Even with all of the amazing shows that I’ve seen in the past couple of days, last night was the highlight of my week. It wasn’t because of the music, more because of the crowd. I know that I’m literally living the dream but it can get a bit rough when I can’t find time to hang out with friends. That’s why nights like last night are so important to me. Sure, the show was great but being able to see all of my friends was better. After doing the rounds and saying hi to everyone I could find, I grabbed my drink and staked my spot out in the venue.
Lorna Shore was the first band to take the stage and the main reason I was stoked for the show. These guys have always impressed me with their shear brutality and how they can find a breakdown in the breakdown. Even though I’ve seen these guys nearly half a dozen times, last night was the best. Their set was short which was a bit of a bummer but they easily packed a punch in the twenty five minutes that they spent on stage. There are times in Lorna Shore’s music where the breakdowns are so heavy and so slow that you can’t help but look at your friends with that “Is this even real?” face. Even though they were the first band to take the stage, Lorna Shore’s energy had the crowd moving within the first song. There was no need for a warm up or anything else. Within the first couple of notes, the pit was made and bodies were flying. Lorna Shore had set the bar high and I wondered if the other bands would be able to even come close.
Hailing from San Diego, Carnifex is one of those bands that, although I don’t particularly love their music on recordings, I refuse to miss a chance to see them live. Carnifex’s music is the epitome of deathcore and to say they do it right would be an understatement. These guys had a very crisp feeling to the music that was lost among the other bands and typically lost in the genre. Even with a crisp and clean sound to their music, these guys kept the energy high and had a sense of aggression and brutality that had reigned supreme throughout the night.
It’s hard to put Carnifex’s energy into words. The crowd seems to feed off of the band’s energy and vice versa. There was no shortage of pushing and shoving throughout the crowd and the pit that seemed to have stayed in the same spot throughout the night quickly grew and took over majority of the packed venue. Singer Scott Lewis may have a voice that screams brutality but the way he would smile at the crowd surfers was more sincere than anything else. You could tell the band truly appreciated the crowd participation and it was easy to notice that these guys knew they would be nothing without the fans.
With six studio albums out, Carnifex was able to pick a set list that the whole audience could enjoy. Whether you had been a fan since day one and had worshiped their first album “Dead In My Arms” back in 2007 or you were a newcomer who loved their newest album “Slow Death” that came out last year, they played a song for you. Regardless of what song they were playing or what era the song was from, the crowd was eating it up. Having seen these guys multiple times, it’s easy for me to say that last night was the best set I’ve ever seen them play and, for such a seasoned band, it was nice to see them only get better with age and not become complacent with what they have been doing.