Written by Angel Park
This is Hardcore Fest, a festival that focuses on (you guessed it) hardcore music—started by Joe McKay, who has been spearheading this annual event with his team since its first run back in 2005.
This year’s TIHC took place from July 8th-10th at Franklin Music Hall. The massive three-day lineup included sets from artists such as Madball, Comeback Kid, Meraduer, Fury of Five, Drain, and many more.
I’ve had my fair share of light crowd surfing and mild elbow throwing at punk shows. Still, I can’t say I’ve ever spontaneously decided to throw myself amidst a full-blown, no barricade, hardcore festival, especially not on the day of the show. I’ve even had fun at the Van’s Warp Tour (rest in peace).
Well, this year, that’s what happened. Here’s my take on how my brief This is Hardcore experience went on Sunday. If there’s one main thing that TIHC doesn’t have a shortage of, it’s talent. Sunday’s lineup was no exception, and as I made my way through the packed floor of Franklin Music Hall that afternoon, I was greeted with the heavy, melodic riffs from the Wilkes-Barre-based group, One Step Closer. The group’s vocalist, Ryan, took advantage of the lack of barricades and ground-level stage to rage along with the audience as they powered through their set. Energy levels were at an all-time high, and the circle pit never seemed to die down. It was only 2 PM, and I knew things were just starting.
Over the next few hours, I witnessed the most neck-break-worthy, stage dive-inducing, and all-around rowdiest performances from bands such as
and Thursday. All bands provided a mix of old and new tracks, enjoyed by fans of every generation. THIC is known for seamlessly uniting the older generation of hardcore fans, staff, and communities with those newer to the scene. Seeing this ethos unfold in person was awe-worthy, even from someone just getting their start in the genre.
Next year, I’ll make sure I attend all three days.
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