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Stick To Your GunsMelkweg 2015 007Melkweg, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
3rd May 2015
Impericon Festival with The Ghost Inside, Suicide Silence, Stick To Your Guns, Whitechapel, Deez Nuts, Comeback Kid, Thy Art Is Murder, Being As An Ocean, Bane, Carnifex, Adept, My Iron Lung

Impericon presents a loud metalcore tour through Europe with The Ghost Inside, Emmure, Suicide Silence, Stick To Your Guns, Whitechapel, Deez Nutz, Comeback Kid, Being As An Ocean, Adept and more! The first Dutch edition takes place at the Melkweg, Amsterdam and it is completely sold out. On a rainy Sunday it seems that most fans have woken up early to see the first band start at 2.15 pm and there is a big line at the venue.


My Iron Lung (US)

MY IRON LUNG is a post-Hardcore band from San Diego, California that started out in 2010. The band was originally formed by members of bands such as A BETTER HOPE FOUNDATION, HERITAGE, and CROWNE HILL. MY IRON LUNG’s debut EP ‘No Such Thing’ was released in 2011. Their last album ‘Relief’ dates from 2014. MY IRON LUNG is Matthew Fitzpatrick (vocals), Anays Torres (Guitar), Eric Boudreau (bass) and *unknown* (drums). www.facebook.com/myironlungmusic

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Music & Performance
MY IRON LUNG has the honour of kicking off the festival; a tough job for an audience that probably just got out of bed and has no beer in their system yet. Front man Matthew Fitzpatrick has a great voice and their music has a good flow and dynamics, but their performance needed a little wakeup call as well. The musicians were primarily focused on their instruments and there was hardly any interaction with the audience.

Rating
Music: 6
Performance: 6
Sound: 6
Light: 6
Total: 6 / 6

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Adept (SE)

ADEPT is a post-Hardcore metal band from Sweden. The band was founded in 2004 and has released a couple of demos and three full length albums thus far. Their debut album ‘Another Year of Disaster’ was released in 2010 and their latest production ‘Silence the world’ dates from 2013. A new album is coming up this year. ADEPT is Robert Ljung (vocals), Jerry Repo (guitar), Gustav Lithammer (guitar), Filip Brandelius (bass) and Gabriel Hellmark (drums). www.adeptofficial.com / www.facebook.com/AdeptOfficial

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Music & Performance
Let’s energize! The men of ADEPT clearly don’t care about the time of day and they kick it off loud and fast with ‘The Ocean Grave’ from their 2013 album ‘Silence the World’. After another old song they play ‘Dark Clouds’ from their upcoming album. Vocalist Ljung makes sure he utilizes every part of the stage as he runs and jumps around. ADEPT puts up a tight dynamic show with awesome grunts and screams (and a little less awesome clean vocals). The audience seems to have woken up and we can see some warming up going on in the empty pit.

Setlist
01. The Ocean Grave 
02. Secrets 
03. Dark Clouds 
04. The Ivory Tower 
05. The Lost Boys 

Rating
Music: 7
Performance: 8
Sound: 7
Light: 7
Total: 7.3 / 10

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Carnifex (US)

CARNIFEX is an American Deathcore band from San Diego, California that was formed in 2005. The name of the band is derived from the Old English Latin word äúexecutioner; literally meaning, "executioner". CARNIFEX play an extreme metal musical style known as Deathcore, which is a hybrid of the genres death metal and Metalcore. The band cites DYING FETUS, DARK FUNERAL, THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER, CANNIBAL CORPSE, DISSECTION, IN FLAMES and CARCASS as their main influences. Their latest work ‘Die Without Hope’ was released in 2014 and the band is currently working on a new album. CARNIFEX are Scott Ian Lewis (vocals), Shawn Cameron (drums), Jordan Lockrey (guitar), Cory Arford (guitar) and Fred Calderon (bass). www.facebook.com/CarnifexMetal

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Music & Performance
I was a bit surprised to see CARNIFEX this early in the line-up, but I’m sure that’s one of the reasons for the big line outside the venue this early. Their death core is fast, brutal and in-your-face with hardly a break from that double bass until they end their short set: these guys are animals! Their sound is big and loud with vicious grunts from Scott Lewis, pounding bass from Shawn and Fred and 8-string guitar violence from Jordan and Cory. CARNIFEX navigates through their repertoire with amongst others ‘Slit Wrist Savior’ and ‘Lie to my Face’ from their 2007 album ‘Dead in my Arms’, ‘Hell chose me’, title track of the same album and ‘Die without hope’ from their latest album. Wicked!

Setlist (incomplete)
Slit Wrist Savior
Die Without Hope
Lie to My Face
Hell Chose Me

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 8
Light: 6
Total: 7.5 / 10

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Bane (US)

BANE is a Hardcore punk band formed in 1995 as a side project between Aaron Dalbec (CONVERGE) and Damon Bellardo. Like many other Hardcore bands, BANE are known for their promotion of tolerance and unity within the scene as well as a straight edge life style. Their most recent album release ‘Don’t Wait Up’ dates from 2014. BANE is Aaron Bedard (vocals), Aaron Dalbec (guitar), Zach Jordan (guitar), Bob Mahoney (drums) and Pete Chilton (bass). www.facebook.com/banecentral

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Music & Performance
BANE runs a late on today’s tight schedule and after they take off, vocalist Aaron claims he overslept in the catering area while apologizing to his band members and the audience. The audience seems forgiving and produces some loud cheers for this classic Hardcore punk band from the US. While Bedard runs around uncoordinated on stage talking us through the lyrics, guitarist Dalbec takes care of some proper clean vocals. The crowd moves up front instantly as Bedard gets down from the stage to scream along with ‘Final Backward Glance’. The venue is getting pretty crowded now and temperatures are going up!

Setlist (incomplete)
Some came running
Final Backward Glance
Can We Start Again

Rating
Music: 7
Performance: 6
Sound: 7
Light: 7
Total: 6.7 / 10

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Being As An Ocean (US)

BEING AS AN OCEAN is an American Post-Hardcore band from Alpine, California. The band was founded by its current members in January 2012. Their debut record ‘Dear G-d…’ charted at #27 on Billboard Heatseekers, supported by tours both in the US and the UK. BEING AS AN OCEAN is Joel Quartuccio (vocals), Tyler Ross (guitar), Ralph Sica (bass), Michael Mcgough (vocals / guitar) and Connor Denis (drums). http://beingasanocean.com/ / www.facebook.com/BeingAsAnOcean

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Music & Performance
Now here’s a band that grabs the crowd’s attention and doesn’t let go until they’re done. BEING AS AN OCEAN is extremely dynamic and goes back and forth between small riffs and gentle drums into raging guitars and drums. Quartuccio takes care of some spoken word, screams and grunts (and stunts, more on that below :-P) but the strong clean vocals of McGough are worth taking note off as well. BEING AS AN OCEAN plays amongst others ‘The Hardest Part Is Forgetting Those You Swore You Would Never Forget’ and ‘Death's Great Black Wing Scrapes the Air’. After a couple of songs Quartuccio has enough of the stage. He gets down into the barrier, over the barrier, onto the stairs, onto the balcony… over the balcony - all while he continues his vocals.

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This guy is fearless, reckless and ruthless as he jumps off the balcony into the audience below with a summersault. Although spectacular, I’m quite happy no one got killed. The bar has been set for today…

Setlist (incomplete)
Mediocre Shakespeare
The Hardest Part Is Forgetting Those You Swore You Would Never Forget
Little Richie
Death's Great Black Wing Scrapes the Air
Dear G-D
L'exquisite Douleur
This Loneliness Won't Be the Death of Me

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 9
Sound: 8
Light: 8
Total: 8.8 / 10

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Thy Art is Murder (AUS)

THY ART IS MURDER is a five-piece Deathcore band hailing from New South Wales, Sydney, Australia. They have a 2005 self-released demo titled ‘This Hole isn’t Deep Enough’ and a 2008 EP released under Skull And Bones Records titled ‘Infinite Death’. In July of 2010, they released their debut full-length album ‘The Adversary’ in Australia and to iTunes. Thy Art is Murder is categorized by their extreme sound and lyrics. THY ART IS MURDER is C.J. McMahon (vocals), Kevin butler (bass), Andy Marsh (guitar), Sean Delander (guitar) and Lee Stanton (drums). www.facebook.com/thyartismurder

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Music & Performance
THY ART IS MURDER brings another dose of Deathcore to the Impericon festival line-up today. It is fast, drums tight like a machine and I cannot make anything of the lyrics. Encouraged by the sarcastic humour of front man McMahon, the audience goes wild and the mosh pit turns into a swirling mass. With green obviously being their only favourite colour, the lighting is minimal. I decide It’s time for a cold beer while enjoying the rest of the spectacle.

Rating
Music: 7
Performance: 6
Sound: 7
Light: 6
Total: 6.5 / 10

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Comeback Kid (CA)

COMEBACK KID is a Canadian Hardcore band from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Their name comes from a headline in a newspaper about hockey player, Mario Lemieux coming back to the NHL. The band was formed in 2002 by Andrew Neufeld and Jeremy Hiebert who were both members of the band FIGURE FOUR, which is currently on hiatus. ‘Die Knowing’, the band’s fifth studio album, was released in 2014 through Victory Records. That same year, drummer and founding member Kyle Profeta announced his departure from the band, to focus on his culinary skills in South Africa. COMEBACK KID’s current line-up is Andrew Neufeld (vocals), Jeremy Hiebert (guitar / vocals), Stu Ross (guitar), Ron Friesen (bass) and Jesse Labovitz (drums). www.comeback-kid.com/ / www.facebook.com/Comeback.Kid

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Music & Performance
It’s about dinner time and some people take a break to grab something to eat outside of the venue. Breaks between bands are a max of 10 to 15 minutes and the Melkweg is getting a bit less crowded as COMEBACK KID takes the stage. The band doesn’t seem bothered by that at all though. They pick up the pace with fast songs like ‘All in a year’ and ‘False Idols’.  They also play ‘Do Yourself a Favor’ which happens to be one of the favourite songs on my running playlist. Front man Neufeld and his men are energetic and the audience sings along easily with their set list. Great show!

Setlist (incomplete)
All in A year
False Idols
Do yourself a favour
You should know better
Wake the dead

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 8
Light: 8
Total: 8 / 10

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Deez Nuts (AUS)

DEEZ NUTS is an Australian Hardcore punk band that formed in Melbourne, Victoria in 2007 from several ex-band members of I KILLED THE PROM QUEEN. The band has released one EP and three studio albums. It was named after DR. DRE's song of the same name. In 2008 they released their debut album ‘Stay True’. The band released a new album this year titled ‘Word is Bond’. DEEZ NUTs is JJ Peters (vocals), Matt 'Realbad' Rogers (guitar), Sean Kennedy (bass) and Alex Salinger (drums). www.facebook.com/deeznutshardcore / www.deeznutshardcore.com

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Music & Performance
Loud cheers go up from the crowd as DEEZ NUTS take the stage. This Hardcore punk band (with Rapcore influences) knows how to build a Hardcore party. Their catchy yet aggressive sound is contagious and soon the venue is jumping along with Peters, Rogers, Kennedy and Salinger on stage. DEEZ NUTS play songs from their latest album ‘Word is Bond’ like ‘Face this on my own’ and ‘Shot after Shot’ as well as some older work like ‘Band of Brothers’. A treat for fans of proper Hardcore punk music!

Setlist (incomplete)
Face this on my own
Word
What’s good
Shot after shot
Don’t wanna talk about it
Band of brothers

Rating
Music: 7
Performance: 7
Sound: 7
Light: 7
Total: 7 / 10

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Whitechapel (US)

WHITECHAPEL is an American death core band from Knoxville, Tennessee. The band is named after the Whitechapel district in East London, England, referencing the series of murders committed by Jack the Ripper. Their debut full-length ‘The Somatic Defilement’ was released July 2007. So far, the band has released five studio albums, five music videos and are currently signed to Metal Blade Records. WHITECHAPEL is Phil Bozeman (vocals), Ben Savage (guitar), Zach Householder (guitar), Alex Wade (guitar), Ben Harclerode (drums) and Gabe Crisp (bass). www.whitechapelband.com/ / www.facebook.com/whitechapelmetal

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Music & Performance
Holy guacamoly! This_is_Loud_and_I_like_it! Intense deep vocals from Bozeman blast from the stage intensified by the powerful bass guitar of Crisp. Bozeman’s small posture is easily overcome by his charisma and vocal power. The alternating heavy guitar work results in a dark sound that clearly pleases the audience as they gather up in front of the stage. Mosh pits, walls of death at this sold out venue result in the smell of sweat and beer and some typical Dutch herbal aroma.  By now, it became almost impossible to manoeuvre around the venue to take different angles for a photo impression which was a pity. Facing a big enthusiastic crowd from the stage will be awesome for the bands though.

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Back to WHITECHAPEL; skilled musicians that put on a tight and dynamic show – definitely go and check them out!

Setlist
01. The Saw Is the Law 
02. Let Me Burn 
03. Section 8
04. Fall of the Hypocrites 
05. This Is Exile 
06. Faces 
07. I Dementia 

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 8
Light: 7
Total: 7.8 / 10

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Stick To Your Guns (US)

STICK TO YOUR GUNS is a 5-piece Hardcore band from Orange County, California. Heavily influenced by the orange county Hardcore scene, their music, message, style, and sound can perhaps be compared to bands like BLEEDING THROUGH and THROWDOWN. After four full-length albums and a number of worldwide tours STICK TO YOUR GUNS released their latest work ‘Disobedient’ in 2015. STICK TO YOUR GUNS is Jesse Barnett (vocals), Chris Rawson (guitar), Josh James (guitar), Andrew Rose (bass) and George Schmitz (drums). www.facebook.com/STYGoc / www.myspace.com/styg

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Music & Performance
STICK TO YOUR GUNS just released their 5th studio album ‘Disobedient’ at the start of March and it is no surprise they play several songs from it such as ‘Nobody’ and ‘What choice did you give us’? Some songs from their 2012 album ‘Diamond’ pass by as well. Barnett, Rawson and Rose make a fair amount of impressive jumps on stage and the audience seems tireless even after a full afternoon of mosh pits, crowd surfing and death walls. After another Sea Sheperd (also: BANE) ideological commercial break, STICK TO YOUR GUNS continue their energetic live set. Every band plays only 30 to 45 minutes and time flies by!

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Setlist (incomplete)
Nobody
Amber
What Choice Did You Give Us?
Such Pain
Diamond
Against Them All

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 8
Light: 8
Total: 8 / 10

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Suicide Silence (US)

Suicide Silence are a Deathcore band from Riverside, California, United States that formed in 2002. The band has so far released three full-length albums on Century Media: ‘The Cleansing’, ‘No Time to Bleed’, and most recently ‘The Black Crown’. Suicide Silence plays a style of Deathcore that’s also influenced by Grindcore, death metal and Mathcore from the complex speed and time signatures in their music. Original vocalist Mitch Lucker was involved in a fatal motorcycle accident in 2012. A year later SUICIDE SILENCE announced it would continue with a new vocalist, Hernan Hermida of All Shall Perish.

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In April 2014, the band announced a new album titled ‘You Can't Stop Me’. SUICIDE SILENCE is Hernan Hermida (vocals), Christopher Garza (rhythm guitar), Mark Helymun (lead guitar), Alex Lopez (drums) and Daniel Kenny (bass). http://bit.ly/ss-ycsm-nbe / www.facebook.com/suicidesilence

Music & Performance
I don’t want to be boring, but SUICIDE SILENCE is yet another high quality band in the Impericon Festival line-up for today. Their sound rolls along from ominous guitar riffs and slower paced parts to hi-speed choruses. Hermida proves himself as a skilled vocalist and performer with awesome death growls as well as high-pitched screams. Definitely a highlight of today!

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Setlist (incomplete)
No Pity for a Coward
Wake Up
Slaves to Substance
Cease to Exist
Unanswered
Fuck Everything
You Can't Stop Me

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 8
Light: 8
Total: 8 / 10

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The Ghost Inside (US)

The Ghost Inside (formerly A DYING DREAM) is an American Hardcore band from Los Angeles, California, formed in 2006. As A DYING DREAM, the band released one EP ‘Now or Never’ at Mediaskare Records. Soon after, they changed their name and released their debut album as THE GHOST INSIDE called ‘Fury And The Fallen Ones’ in 2008. So far, they have released one EP and four studio albums, with their latest ‘Dear Youth’, released in November 2014 through Epitaph Records. THE GHOST INSIDE is Jonathan Vigil (vocals), Aaron Brooks (guitar / vocals), Zach Johnson (guitar), Jim Riley (bass/vocals) and Andrew Tkaczyk (drums). www.theghostinside.com / www.myspace.com/theghostinside

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Music & Performance
By the time THE GHOST INSIDE takes off, my ears are – surprisingly – a little numb. With so many great bands in the line-up, they can hardly be called a headliner but they do have the honour of closing down the stage for today and they do so with verve. Front man Vigil tells the crowd he appreciates their energy after a full afternoon and evening of Hardcore metal. The band knows how to drain that last bit of energy and enthusiasm as they play amongst others ‘Between the Lines’, ‘Avalanche’ and classic ‘Engine 45’.

Setlist (incomplete)
Between the lines
The great unknown
Avalanche
Unspoken
Engine 45

Rating
Music: 7
Performance: 7
Sound: 8
Light: 8
Total: 7.5 / 10

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I made it! it was a great not-so-lazy-Sunday at Impericon festival with an awesome line-up! I must say that twelve bands crammed into an extremely tight schedule might be a bit too much as there was no time for a break. I do look forward to seeing many of them in different settings and festivals soon!

All pictures by Ruth Mampuys (www.ruth-less.nl


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