Straight billed hats with the fancy little gold stickers still on them, skinny jeans galore, gauged ears on kids who needed their parents permission to get them, and more tank tops than a beach store as far as the eye can see. Yes, I’m describing a core concert. More specifically, The All Stars Tour at the Myrtle Beach House of Blues on August 12. These things were all I could see upon entering, not to mention plenty of kids geting in some lawnmower cranking practice. Why was I there? Good question. My feelings about core have been well documented, but I have been a longstanding fan of Emmure. That mixed in with a slight hope in a couple of other bands interested me enough to attend.
I saw After the Burial, Motionless in White, Chelsea Grin, A Ghost Inside, Born of Osiris, In This Moment, Iwrestledabearonce, Blessthefall, For Today, Alesna, and Emmure, I could barely tell each band’s songs apart let alone tell the bands themselves apart. Breakdowns, breakdowns, and, oh yeah, more breakdowns. Each band would play their first song and get boring fast. It became a matter of just being ready for each band to get off the stage. I looked over at one point and saw a guy sleeping. I think his reaction or lack thereof best sums up the concert.
One of the lowest points was that abomination of a band known as Chelsea Grin. They are awful in every sense of the word. It was hard to watch them live. A surprising low point was In This Moment. Maria Brink lacked the energy she performed with years ago when I saw them shortly after the release of their debut album. Their overall performance and set-list just felt weak. It was kind of cool when Brink sang in the middle of the mosh pit for one of the songs though. The absolute worst part of the whole event was For Today front-man Mattie Montgomery’s preaching. After their opening song he broke into a mini sermon about the power of Jesus. I have a HUGE problem with that. I’m not against anyone for their beliefs or religion, but do not shove it down other people’s throats. I did not go to that concert to go to church. If I wanted to hear that shit that’s where I would go. Not the Myrtle Beach House of Blues. I’m paying you to play your “music” not to serve up a little Christianity from your soapbox. Then, there’s Alesana. A bit of comic relief if you will. Larger than life front-man Dennis Lee was wearing smaller than necessary clothing. It was just a little funny and also somewhat disturbing.
Surprisingly, I consider Iwresledabearonce to be the best performance of the night. They had the most energy and just all around seemed to be having fun. Then take into consideration that they have the most diverse and interesting sound of all the bands on the tour lineup. Though I will say Kryta Cameron’s threat to throw her bloody tampon into the crowd was a bit unsettling. Emmure came in as a close second as a highlight of the night. They played an extremely strong setlist. Frankie Palmeri was a completely different frontman than the one I saw in Raleigh on the This is a Family Tour. I don’t know if it was drugs or what, but he was on fire.
Overall, the bands only further cemented my strong distaste for core music. It’s safe to say with the exception of maybe one or two bands that I will never again go to a core concert of any nature. I had a good time, but seeing the same band ten times in a row just isn’t worth it. Looking at the crowd it’s easy to see that core is a kid’s game. Either that or it’s for people who hate real metal.
Below are a few photos I took. There are plenty more to come.