I don’t think I’m alone in having mixed feelings about April.
On one hand, work is piling up as the end of the semester approaches. On the
other, the end of the semester’s actually
approaching. And anyway, the pain of preparing for papers and tests is eased by the absolutely stacked lineup of on-campus music this month, and
that’s a rad stress reliever.
So for this week’s column, I thought I’d try something
different: Instead of reviewing all these great shows and telling you about
what you missed, I’m going to try to “sell” you on a show that’s coming up so
that you don’t actually miss anything. I put “sell” in quotation marks because
all the shows I’m going to be covering are free, and since they’re on campus,
you hopefully won’t take much convincing.
I figure you probably know about the upcoming No-Chella and
Kohoutek Music Festivals, which I’ll be covering in the upcoming weeks anyway,
but you might not know about what’s going down this Saturday. No, not the
Chainsmokers at Claremont McKenna College, although I guess that’s fine if you’re of the EDM
If you prefer your sweaty body-mashing to be a little more
cathartic, then you have to check out the punk show going down in the Social
Room in Pomona College’s Smith Campus Center, sponsored by KSPC, the Pomona Events Committee, and Boxcar. The
lineup is great the whole way down, so I’ll go through it in reverse order
to give you a sense of what to expect, focusing slightly more on the
“headliners” simply because I am already more familiar with them.
The closing act is Summer Vacation, a Los Angeles act that allegedly destroys live. Tight, noisy, and catchy, they’re messing around in that gray
area between the genres of punk, emo, and “indie rock” that’s become so
productive these past few years.
If you need some sonic reference points, I’ve heard their fantastic
2011 LP Condition mentioned in the
same breath as releases from Joyce Manor and By Surprise. At the tail end of
last year, they even dropped a split 7” with Philadelphia’s Glocca Morra, my
favorite active emo outfit. Basically, these guys have the credentials to tear
the roof off the Social Room, so don’t miss them.
Playing before them is Leer, a screamo five-piece from San
Jose that blends throaty yelps with aggressive math rock and resembles a
pissed-off This Town Needs Guns. If you want a nice, freeintroduction to
them, check out last year’s Spring Break
No Parents EP. Opener “As Cool As An Attempted Suicide” showcases Leer’s battling dispositions for fluid and melodic arrangements that boil over with
Any band that manages to sound like At the Drive-In and Dance Gavin
Dance at the same time is all right with me, and Leer’s penchant for melody is
just an added bonus. Highly recommended.
Hailing from Santa Clarita, Tidemouth will play the third
set of the night, bringing their punishing sound straight to us. Their listed
genre on Facebook is “hardcore-gothic-grunge,” and it kind of makes sense. With
a much more pronounced focus on the hardcore element of screamo than Leer, they
should be a pummeling opener. They’re opening for the legendary
Circle Takes the Square in Fresno at the end of this month, so you know they
can bring it.
Funny enough, the act before them, Left Astray, is opening
for Circle Takes the Square in Pomona on May 1, to give you a sense of their sonic similarities.
Intense and blistering, I get the sense that these guys listened to Converge a lot
Last, but certainly not least, is the first act, Lilith, a
sludgy feminist hardcore group from Phoenix. I saw one review call them
“Perfect Pussy with doom metal leanings,” and while pretty reductive, that’s
not too far off the mark. If their set has half the amount of fury in last
month’s Bloom EP, it’ll be one to
write home about.
So if you can’t stand to
hear “#selfies” one more time (or ever, if you’re in my position), come on down
to the Social Room on Saturday. There’s a spot in the mosh. Gage Taylor PO ’16 is majoring in media studies and philosophy. He is the electronic music director for the 5C radio station KSPC.