Slam Dunk announce 13 more bands!

Slam Dunk Festival have announced 13 more bands who will be playing the 3 date festival around the UK this May. With headliners All Time Low, Four Year Strong and Deaf Havana already announced to play the festival, the festival will now host the likes of
Kids In Glass Houses, Bury Tomorrow, Cancer Bats, Heights, Heart In Hand, Tonight Alive, Heroes For Hire, House VS Hurricane, The American Scene, Gnarwolves, Blitz Kids, Captain Chunk! and [spunge]

Slam Dunk Festival dates:

25th May – Leeds University
26 May – The Forum, Hatfield
27th May – Civic, Wolverhampton

For ticket information visit www.slamdunkmusic.com.

Punk Goes Pop 5

Punk Goes Pop 5Various Artists
‘Punk Goes Pop Volume 5’

[Fearless Records]

Now in its 5th edition, through Fearless Records, our favourite bands that come in all different (melodic) shapes and (dynamic) sizes have again transformed cringe worthy songs into a gigantic hamster wheel of fun, all in the name of punk.

Forever The Sickest Kids didn’t have many lyrics to remember with ‘We Found Love’, but what they did do brilliantly was add their extremely contagious pop punk remedy. Almost unrecognisable is ‘Girls Just Want To Have Fun’ re-worked by The Maine who undoubtedly do an excellent job, shaking the truly pop track into something so much more. From the intense intro straight through to Frontman John O’Callaghan’s bold vocals in the chorus that sees him showing off a melody nothing short of charismatic. Then there’s the guitar riff injected with astounding effects once found in much heavier music. The Maine’s rendition has an electrifying momentum, exactly that this track needed.

An unexpected yet very much impressive piece comes from Upon This Dawning who take on ‘Call Me Maybe’ and see it through with a storm of metalcore dual vocals including hugely destructive screams, as well as a drum beat that is very much alive. Who ever thought they’d find themselves fist punching the air and getting ready to start a circle pit to this song?

Attacking the boy band trend, We Came As Romans give The Wanted a run for their money as they cover ‘Glad You Came’. The group chants matched with Dave Stephens and Kyle Pavone vocals ablaze with a frankly radiant vibe, let’s hope they add this to their set list next time they’re in the UK.

Chiodos’ Craig Owen has carved a name for himself from day one and only he would ever dare to reinvent ‘Paradise’. Craig takes the number one hit like a bull by the horns, but unlike the rest of the compilation which never ceases to make chart toppers 1000x heavier, this one is head turning due to leaving affectionate leaving goose bumps over your skin. Anyone with their hearing still intact will appreciate this creation.

What do you get when you put together pop punk princes Mayday Parade, rising star Vic Fuentes from Pierce The Veil and a radio signature song in the form of ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’? …The biggest stand out track to ever feature on such compilation of course! It seems, not only are Mayday Parade great at their own songs but they can cover a critically acclaimed established song with ease.

Memphis May Fire set their goals high by choosing to reincarnate Bruno Mars’s ‘Grenade’ – previously nominated for Record of the Year at the Grammy’s. An unpredictable choice yet the band that blew us away last month with their support slot to Of Mice & Men, went away and tore apart this ballad; exchanging a soulful heartbreak/love song for a furiously brutal anthem laden with scorching power.

The final track deserves the status of being an absolute belter. ‘Ass Back Home’ is reconstructed by Secrets who should leave Gym Class Heroes sat on the edge of their seats. We’re definitely not favouring any genre but it’s a fact to say some of these original tracks needed a serious make over and they got just that.

Full track list:
1. Memphis May Fire “Grenade” (Bruno Mars)
2. Upon This Dawning “Call Me Maybe (Carly Rae Jepsen)
3. Mayday Parade ft Vic Fuentes “Somebody That I Used To Know” (Gotye)
4. We Came As Romans “Glad You Came” (The Wanted)
5. Like Moths To Flames “Some Nights” (fun)
6. Breathe Carolina “Billie Jean” (Michael Jackson)
7. Forever The Sickest Kids “We Found Love” (Rihanna)
8. Issues “Boyfriend” (Justin Bieber)
9. The Maine “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” (Cyndi Lauper)
10. Craig Owens “Paradise” (Coldplay)
11. Crown The Empire “Payphone” (Maroon 5)
12. The Word Alive “Mercy” (Kanye West)
13. Secrets “Ass Back Home” (Gym Class Heroes)

Words: Jenny Chu

Pierce The Veil Live at The Underworld

PIERCE THE VEIL
w/Crown The Empire, The Getaway Plan

The Underworld, London
21st September 2012

It’s a great feeling when you can sense excitement in the air. Tonight’s show at Underworld sold out long in advance and every punter inside this dungeon like venue is experiencing the same static charge that makes neck hair stand to attention. Senses are heightened as the show kicks off.

First on are Australian rockers The Getaway Plan. After a short hiatus the boys are over on our shores to seduce with their impressive melodies. Definitely the most mainstream of all acts on the bill tonight, but there’s no shame in that when the sophisticated ‘The Reckoning‘ is delivered to perfection. The Getaway Plan perform solidly, and will most definitely have drawn in a few new fans with their set.

Crown The Empire are what many dislike about metalcore these days. Their gimmick laden nonsense wins the hearts of the crowd but would see metal gods of the past turning in their graves. Random dustup elements, generic riffs and mock brutal breakdowns with dual clean and screamed vocals defines their music. Imagine The Blackout combined with Asking Alexandria finished off with an overdose of American sleaze. In their matching suits and styled haircuts Crown The Empire are every scene kid’s wet dream. Fair play to the band, they know what is working in the market currently, they will develop a loyal following from younger metal fans, but their musical integrity is questionable.

Just like with Crown The Empire, the average age of a Pierce The Veil fan at the Underworld tonight seems to be about 16. But the difference with Pierce The Veil is that their music can appeal to a much wider audience than those screaming in front of them; their music isn’t made to target a particular market, their sound feels sincere and a genuine combination of heart-felt cultural and musical influences.

With tracks from ‘Collide The Sky‘ now making a welcome appearance on PTV’s set list, their repertoire has been turned up a notch. The fast paced ‘Hell Above‘ makes for a triumphant opener that instantly portrays the bands intent to make this show a great one. ‘Bulls In The Bronx‘ contains one of this years sweetest solos and proves to be song structure excellence in a live environment. Old favourites like ‘Caraphernelia‘ and ‘Bulletproof Love‘ result in mass sing-alongs and crowd surfing frenzies. Ending with ‘King For A Day‘ sums up Pierce The Veil’s dominance, they own this show and have performed impeccably tightly in this crowed sweat box.

Pierce The Veil provide a masterclass tonight. Although they could be battling in an over saturated market, they are carving their own way, breaking out and away from stereotypes with something unique and undeniably special.

Words & Photos: Emma Wallace

Must See Shows: September 2012


After a triumphant Reading & Leeds last weekend, the outdoor festival season has pretty much drawn to a close, but fear not, there are plenty of gigs coming up to get your teeth into for those still hungry for more gnarly music. Below is a list of shows that Crossfire recommends over September 2012.

B.DOLAN’s “The Church of Love & Ruin”

1st – MILTON KEYNES, UK – Crauford Arms (B. DOLAN ONLY, EXTENDED SOLO SET), 2nd – BRISTOL, The Croft (B. DOLAN ONLY, EXTENDED SOLO SET), 3rd – LONDON The Jazz Cafe, 4th – LIVERPOOL Kazimier, 5th – BIRMINGHAM HMV Institute, 6th – READING SUB89 (ft. headlining set from SAGE FRANCIS), 7th – BRIGHTON Coalition (ft. headlining set from SAGE FRANCIS)

Rapper B.Dolan presents ‘The Church Of Love & Ruin’. In the words of the man himself expect the following: “Inspired by the ’boutique festival’ scene, “Church” focuses on atmosphere, handpicked artists, and chaotic, inspired moments of surprise throughout the show (i.e. being part of a ‘toilet paper dodgeball’ game with 800 other people). Come & be blessed.”

BLOOD OF THE SPECTRE / DOOMED FROM DAY ONE

11th – BIRMINGHAM Scruffy Murphy’s, 12th – LONDON The New Cross Inn, 13th – SWINDON 12 Bar, 14th – MAIDENHEAD HOBFEST Hobgoblin, 16th – HIGH WYCOMBE Scorpio’s Bar

Pay particular attention to Doomed From Day One on this UK tour. The young band mix everything from The Black Dahlia Murder inspired vocals and riffs to experimental jazz in their unique sound! Out of all the dates, Maidenhead looks like the one, although it doesn’t hit the map too often in musical terms, catching them in this sweaty venue with fine ales on tap seems like an opportunity not to be missed.

DYING FETUS

16th – BRIGHTON Concorde2 , 17th – NORWICH Waterfront, 18th – BIRMINGHAM O2 Academy 2
19th – READING Sub89, 20th – MANCHESTER Club Academy, 21st – GLASGOW Cathouse, 22nd – DUBLIN The Pint, 23rd – LONDON Underworld

It’d be a challenge to find a tour that is more deadly than the’ Womb to Waste Tour’. The line up consists of headliners Dying Fetus, Job For A Cowboy, Revocation and Cerebral Bore.

GNARWOLVES

28th – LONDON Old Blues Last

Gnarwolves, a sick band, they were awesome at Hevy Fest and their latest release ‘Cru’ is always spinning at Crossfire HQ. This show is free, so there’s no reason not to attend!

HER PARENTS

18th – LONDON Camden Barfly

The Barfly is renowned for showcasing the best in new talent, with this gig being one of those nights. Her Parents are an exciting indie band born from the ashes of Dananananaykroyd, Stairs to Korea, and Internet Forever.

LA DISPUTE/TITLE FIGHT

20th – LONDON The Garage

If you are luckily enough to have a ticket for this one off show, you don’t need telling how special it will be. If you don’t it may well be worth splashing out on Viagogo or ebay. La Dispute put on a mesmerising live performance and Title Fight’s fast paced pop-punk is second to none. This is going to be amazing.

PIERCE THE VEIL

16 LEEDS Cockpit 2, 17 NEWCASTLE Academy 2, 18 GLASGOW Ivory Blacks, 20 NOTTINGHAM Rock City Basement, 21 LONDON Underworld, 22 BIRMINGHAM Asylum, 23 MANCHESTER Moho Live, 25 SOUTHAMPTON Joiners, 26 CARDIFF Clwb Ifor Bach, 27 BRISTOL The Fleece, 28 KINGSTON The Peel

Pierce The Veil are a growing phenomenon over the pond and we can’t get enough of their latest album ‘Collide With The Sky’. These shows seem pretty intimate for a band ready to explode into the scene, catch them while you can.

SCHOLARS

15th – SOUTHSEA Festival, 17th – GUILDFORD The Star, 19th – KINGSTON Bacchus, 20th – SUNDERLAND Bar One, 21st – HARTLEPOOl The Studio, 22nd – BIDEFORD Palladium, 27 SOUTHAMPTON Avondale House, 28th – RAMSGATE Red Arrows Club

The excellent Scholars are touring in support of new single Blinda Data which you can view below.

SOUTHSEA FEST
15th – SOUTHSEA, Various Venues

Bastions, Tall Ships, Polio, Veils, The Social Club, Black Moth, Gnarwolves and many more play this award winning festival that celebrates underground and independent music. Plenty of names on the bill to check out whilst they are still under the radar.

THE MENZINGERS

19th – BIRMINGHAM Hare & Hounds, 20th – MANCHESTER Moho Live, 21st – GLASGOW Captain’s Rest, 22nd – LEEDS Cockpit III, 23ed – SOUTHAMPTON Unit, 24th – BRISTOL Croft, 25th – LONDON Borderline

Melodic punk rock doesn’t get more emotional than The Menzingers, their latest album ‘On The Impossible Past’ is absolutely perfect. Expect songs taken from that release and their large back catalogue of impressive tunes.

WE ARE THE OCEAN/GIANTS

18 – EXETER Cavern, 19 – LONDON Barfly, 20 – LEEDS Cockpit II, 22 – MANCHESTER Deaf Institute, 23 – GLASGOW King Tut’s, 25 – CARLISLE Brickyard, 26 – SHEFFIELD Academy II, 27 – WREXHAM Central Station, 28 – DUBLIN Academy II, 29 – BELFAST Speakeasy

After the controversial departure of vocalist Dan Brown and with a new album up their sleeves it’ll be interesting to see the new look We Are The Ocean perform in front of their own fans. But what’s even more exciting is that skate-punks Giants are opening up the shows. We featured this band latest single ‘Snakes’ earlier in August and are expecting big things to come from them.

THE XCERTS

17th – LONDON, The Borderline

Origionating from Aberdeen, The Xcerts draw influence from iconic Scottish bands such as Biffy Clyro and Suciperro. At this intimate show the young band will be playing their critically acclaimed album ‘Scatterbrain’ in full.

Words: Emma Wallace

Pierce The Veil

PIERCE THE VEIL
Collide With The Sky
(Fearless Records)

Don’t let the screaming and synths put you off. Pierce The Veil have crafted an album with a depth of sound and intricate melodies that you can totally get lost in. Singer Vic’s vocals soar above searing guitars and pummeling drumbeats but there are interludes of quiet amongst the full-on noise. The overwhelmingly heavy instrumentals are offset by the sheer melody of the vocals throughout although there’s admittedly the odd background scream here and there to keep the intensity up.

The riff on ‘Bulls In The Bronx’ is ballsy and bold, leading into a catchy melodic chorus punctuated with a guttural growl. A bizarre acoustic guitar picked interlude brings a samba-influenced flavor to proceedings before building back into the heaviness. Production is intense throughout this record, with the sound always feeling very big. There are also several guest spots on the album, the most notable being Jason Aalon from letlive. on the truly epic centrepoint ‘Tangled In The Great Escape’. His slightly deeper melodies intertwine with Vic’s higher pitched vocals to create something quite special. The chorus is one of the catchiest on the record yet unassumingly so and elegantly put together. It’s almost six minutes long and a lot happens in that time. Heavy and gracefully beautiful in twists and turns (see the piano epilogue), this is definitely a standout track.

With proggy, screamo, hardcore and punk elements, along with PTV’s unique ability to bring in the unusual instrumentals, this album is an ambitious and impressive effort.

Sarah Maynard