SWAMP FEST - Day #2
Date: August 14th, 2016
Location: @Strange Matter in Richmond, Virginia
Players: This Land Is Now Dead, Lull, Van Hagar, The Heads Are Zeros, Truman, Euth, Iwakura, Pig Latin, Flesh Born and Ostraca.
Genres covered: punk, rock, emo, screamo, emo-violence, hardcore, metal, math metal, powerviolence, thrash, noise, grind, experimental, ambient
Consensus: This fest is fucking amazing. I traveled all the way from Canada for it and it did not disappoint!
Related Distro items: Swamp Fest tape / zine, Euth split tape with Closet Witch, Coma Regalia 'There's Still Time' tape and their split 12" with What Of Us, Ostraca 'Deathless' tapes and 12"s, Flesh Born split 12" with Cara Neir, "Virginia is for screamo" patch and tons of Van Hagar pins, stickers and patches.
Details: listed below
Mitchie, Will & Drew of Swamp FestIn the midst of a ton of amazing bands playing I somehow managed to steal these three integral members of Swamp Fest and pick their brains for 10 minutes. What they have done is more than inspiring, it's joyous, inclusive, celebratory and message driven. Listen to what Mitchie, Will and Drew have to say about it all below.
LULL was up second and played an intriguing mixture of hardcore and spacey ambiance. The video I captured was probably one of the best parts of their set so definitely check it out. The intro to this song was much lengthier and very honest, as well as sad. I'm unsure what to liken the band to in terms of comparisons, but I guess experimental hardcore is the most apt.
мятеж's touring partners VAN HÄGAR were up next and flew through their lightning set of bass driven powerviolence. As per usual Jazzi, Jesse and Nicky fucked shit up but did so with a message. Awesome band that I adored watching live night after night. I miss y'all <3
THE HEADS ARE ZEROS
This drum, guitar and vocal trio played a raw, abrasive and chaotic hardcore that probably stripped away a few unnecessary ear hairs. The passion was pretty darn obvious and they don't really sound like other bands, which is really cool. Will definitely be checking out more by the Baltimore band.
This local trio were fucking huge. Easily one of the primary reasons I wanted to play this fest, TRUMAN did not disappoint. Their screamy, shrieky and atmospheric hardcore filled the room to the point of saturation and was a spectacle as well as a fantasy all rolled into one. The band should be releasing a new EP in the next year or so, if I'm not mistaken. The songs are insane. I am so pumped for this band. P.S. members of .gif from god, This Land Is Now Dead and Samarra. P.S.S. I captured the entire set.
Falling somewhere between Enkephalin, Dillinger Escape Plan and Hive Mind, this tech-metal/grind band with screamo influences, Wyoming's EUTH is an absolute mindfuck. Making an insane amount of noise with just a guitarist, drummer and vocalist, this three-piece tore through their set like it was nothing. They are definitely one of the heaviest and mathiest crossovers I've heard in awhile and should you want to check out the band, nab their cassette split with Closet Witch here.
tape / pin / sticker
I had never heard this band before but had run across the name. Wowza. This was amazing. Sheer chaos. Reckless abandon. Passion. Intensity. More positive words. Etc. Without a doubt one of the best sets of the fest. It's almost like screamo-Converge. I have since been listening to them non-stop. Watch all five of these videos because they all rule.
Filthy me. I went to the store and by the time I got back PIG LATIN had already played. I was bummed not only that I missed just one band the entire tour, but also that it happened to be PIG LATIN. The song on the Swamp Comp doesn't really do the band justice, as live they are a different beast. The screamy hardcore with awkward juxtapositions is just what I love, so thank science Jesse Mowery filmed the entire set, which you can view below. I also talked with at least one member of the band for awhile and they seemed like beautiful people.
Veterans FLESH BORN ripped it up next. The set featured green guitars, head smacking mics, bow ties and a keg+baseball bat for the Slipknot cover which I've featured below. I must say, perhaps because I never cared for Slipknot, but this video in particular is fucking amazing in every respect.
Local heroes and internationally praised OSTRACA closed the fest. The three-piece absolutely crushed it and had everyone in the place packed together real close and intimate. With some help from Christopher Morgan from .gif from god and Parker Lawson from Flesh Born on a song or two, the band played crazy tight and had everyone going fucking apeshit.
12" / tape
Here's Will and I. I love Will. Seems kinda obvious, though.
Here I am four days after the fest, at home in Canada, and still wearing my Swamp Fest wrist band. I just couldn't let go.
Additional love to my brother Jesse Mowery and his wife Jazzi for being two of the best people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting.
Obvious shout outs to Chris Story for basically being мятеж.
And thus concludes...
See you in Europe, summer 2017.