Live Review: Knocked Loose w/Terror, Static Dress & Grove Street Families at The Engine Rooms in Southampton!

At a time when so many European tour treks are being rescheduled it’s refreshing to see tonight’s line up upon our shores when we honestly didn’t expect it to happen. The last night of the run sees the bands arriving in Southampton in the rain but while it’s cold outside, we know that tonight is going to be electric having seen these bands in the live arena previously. To put it mildly, the expectation is sky high for this one. Tonight might be a hardcore show but in the packed crowd which might not be officially sold out but must be pretty damn close there is a lot of love on the shirts of those here for all kinds of Metal. From Northlane to Fit For An Autopsy, from Hellripper to Counterparts, they’re all covered.

The final show of this seven night tour is opened by Grove Street Families [8/10] who are bathed in green light as they hammer through a set of cuts that combine Hardcore, Hardcore Punk and Crossover Thrash, keeping the energy high and the gaps between the songs as short as humanly possible. When it comes to a band to open a show like this, there aren’t many better suited with cuts like “Rest In Power“, “Shift” and “The Right To Remain Violent” going down a storm so while they are long overdue some new jams, the old ones haven’t lost any of their mosh pit frenzy inducing power.

Perhaps the odd one out of this line up are Static Dress [8/10] who sound like a screamo version of post-hardcore pioneers Glassjaw during their clean vocal choruses. What they do is maintain the high energy levels created by Grove Street Families and while the stunning light show that accompanies their sound track is impressive, it does mean that you can barely see the band. Over at the merch table they have copies of the comic book that their album “Prologue” is the soundtrack to and although the music doesn’t necessarily need to context as it batters us, they could perhaps benefit from having something on a screen behind them when they’re playing longer sets.

The presence of a band of the stature of Terror [10/10] on this bill not only effectively makes it a co-headlining show with just as many here to see them as the headliners but also puts the pressure on. Perhaps sensing that and wanting to go toe to toe with Knocked Loose in this heavyweight battle, Terror bring out the big guns in “Spit My Rage” and “Overcome” at the very start of their set and get circle pits and chant along moments throughout. Security keeps their cool with people wanting to stage dive, which they can’t because of the barrier in front of the stage but that doesn’t stop Scott Vogel from throwing his microphone into the audience repeatedly so people can roar the words before reeling it in. It’s a classic set of Beatdown Hardcore and no one could ask for more.

This maybe a tour for recent EP “A Tear In the Fabric of Life” but Knocked Loose [10/10] only offer up a pair of cuts from the record in “Where Light Divides the Holler” and “God Knows” during an incendiary career spanning set of blistering high energy cuts with “Dead Ringer” and “Billy No Mates” going off like improvised explosive devices in the mosh pit. They know how to work a crowd into a frenzy and as if spurred on by heavyweights Terror, bate the audience into pushing those around them with friendly aggressive hardcore moves and circle pits while security get sweaty and earn their cash. Every cut is a neck snapper, the riff tone seems heavier live than it is on the records and the band take absolutely no prisoners. Tonight is a triumph that will go down long in the memory as the rising force from Oldham County, Kentucky continue to make strides with trademark anthemic delivery.

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