This Is Hardcore Fest – Friday, I’m in Love


(all photos by ANNE SPINA)

Survived Thursday? Not terribly difficult, but a pat on the back nonetheless. Friday brought the fest to the Electric Factory, where it would ride out the next three days. There was still many, many bands yet to play at this point, along with merch to buy, food to eat, and causes to support. I spent the early part of the evening in the lot, decided what to eat and contemplating a haircut from Lucky’s Barbershop before heading back inside for Full of Hell, who were chock full of—you guessed it—hell. They put together a punishing set for the gathering crowd, a lot of whom dispersed during Haymaker most likely due to their political bent. I also headed back outside to take a brief rest before being front and center for Iron Reagan. Though I wouldn’t necessarily classify them as hardcore, the scene appreciated what they bought to the stage and welcomed the circle pit. The only thing I didn’t welcome was an unexpected kick to the neck while singing along to “Miserable Failure,” but thems the breaks (thankfully there weren’t actual breaks).


Fully exhausted (and in a slight bit of pain), I found my way to the Street Food Philly cart for a shrimp po’ boy that restored my faith in humanity. This was how I expected the weekend to go. Mosh, eat, repeat. Pretty ideal, right? I shoved the sandwich in my face and headed back in for All Out War, opting for the balcony the rest of the night because I am an old man. From my vantage point, there were plenty of people in attendance for Cleveland’s finest, Ringworm and Integrity. I love the imagery and lyrics from both, but then again, I’m a metalhead first and foremost. Devil shit is just plain cool (up to a point, of course. Can’t get too serious with it). Thankfully, I didn’t have any nightmares following these two.

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