Friday Night: Every Time I Die and the Acacia Strain at Warehouse Live
Buffalo's Every Time I Die has been around long enough that fans know exactly what to expect from their gigs: unrepentant mayhem both onstage and off, soundtracked by a high-energy stream of stomping, howling hardcore. When the band's party wagon crashed into Warehouse Live on Friday night, it was greeted by a sellout of supporters well past ready to cut loose and go absolutely bonkers. Predictably, ETID was only too happy to deliver the goods.
Throughout their 15 or so years at or near the top of the metalcore movement, Every Time I Die have stood out amongst their peers by never taking themselves too seriously, pumping out boozy, unhinged heaviness studded with sarcasm and wit. Massachusetts deathcore warriors the Acacia Strain, providing direct support for ETID on the five-band tour, proved to be a bit of an uncomfortable fit stylistically with the headliners' smilin' disposition.
The venue's studio room was packed balls to buttholes for the show, and Acacia's pummeling, nihilistic assault soured the crowd's mood a bit. Grimacing fans submitted to vicious hate-moshing in the middle of the floor as the band produced crushing syncopated grooves largely unadorned by melodic distractions. Tightly packed as the room was, it was tough to get away from the carnage, and it was a tad unnerving to see concertgoers' fight-or-flight instincts kick in amongst the flying fists and kicks.
The Acacia Strain did all they could to keep the crowd roiling.
Simply finding a place to stand around was a challenge. Venue security did a nice job of hustling shit-starters through the throng before scattered scuffles turned into all-out brawls, but the typically tight-knit scenesters sweating all over each other didn't appear to be feeling the brotherly love after the Acacia Strain's set that often gets preached at hardcore shows. Mercifully, that changed quick when ETID hit the stage.
The anticipation had grown nearly insufferable as the band's gear was set up. When the lights went dark, the Acacia Strain's misanthropic fury was forgotten as fans greeted their heroes with a spirited "Let's go, Buffalo!" football chant. Charged and ready, Every Time I Die launched into the ferocious "Bored Stiff," and the audience exploded.
Maybe they'd been moshed out from the night's previous acts, but during ETID's set, the crowd mostly preferred to clap, pogo, scream and bounce off the walls rather than bang into each other.