As we arrived at the non de-script house in any street New Brunswick, we noticed a small gathering of Punks and HXC kids gathered outside. It brought us both back to the days when house shows were more prevalent and it felt as if every New Jersey basement was filled with kids, a roster of bands who were to later become legends and a table with records that were sold slightly below price.
Absent were the pertinacious nature that goes along with a lot of shows these days.
Pushing past the mattress that served as both a door and noise insulation were we caught Radio Exile in mid set.
The set was sharp and the attending crowd seemed to enjoy every note. As the band finished up and the crowd dispersed in different directions the space opened up to a merch area and some couches next to a spray painted wall that read "R.I.P. Court Tavern" a stark reminder of the clubs recent closing. Dave and I headed over to the table which was manned by Deep Sleeps frontman Tony.
They really brought me back to some of the things I loved about HardCore in the 90's. After their set Dave almost immediately headed back to the table to grab a copy of the bands demo. You can check out his review right Here, Later that night I spoke to their guitarist and singer and found out they were located nearby in Jersey City. I definitely look forward to seeing them again.
I think he was right.
Attitude Era took about five times longer to set up than they did to actually play. Once they did play it was total chaos with the singer and guitarist throwing rolls of oversized toilet paper and launching into the crowd repeatedly. It was hard to contain their energy or noise in the small space. Within a few minutes of screaming, jumping and pouncing, it was all over. Once again we thought, "In the time they set up and broke down they could have toured on that set.
The Baltimore based band has become one of if not our favorite Hardcore act playing today. Knowing that they were finally coming to the area created quite a bit of excitement for these old men.
Deep Sleep have an amazing energy and made a quick and lasting impression on the crowd. HardCore can often get way too serious with it's subject matter, testosterone driven sound and tough guy image but this was a band that were there to have fun and they looked as if they had a ton of it.
The huge Descendents influence didn't hurt one bit. Everybody was on point on this particular night and we felt lucky to be a part.