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intro siberianmeatgrinder13Turbinenhalle, Oberhausen, Germany
26th January 2019
EMP Persistence Tour 2019 with Cutthroat, Take Offense, Siberian Meat Grinder, Billybio, Booze & Glory, Walls Of Jericho, Municipal Waste, Ignite, Sick Of It All

If your New Year’s resolutions included more intensive workout sessions as well as the perfection of circle pit skills, this was your chance: merchandise firm EMP has packed a brutal dose of Hardcore, Punk and Metal bands in their 14th version of the annual EMP Persistence Tour and sent it to the beloved Turbinenhalle in Oberhausen. The originally scheduled seven bands were complemented by two more acts (BILLYBIO and CUTTHROAT), which should be more than enough to get your ass kicked in every way possible.

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The first band to start was the L.A. Hardcore combo CUTTHROAT. Using a mixture of Hardcore, Beatdown, 90s Hip-Hop and Thrash, they have made their mark and released their first self-titled album in summer 2018. /


Music & Performance
The quartet CUTTHROAT definitely showed the unfortunately still thin crowd what time it was for that Saturday night. The music reminded me a little of the early LIMP BIZKIT works: Definitely Hardcore with strong west coast flavour. Singer/ Shouter Neil Roemer also exhibited some advanced rap skills during the set, for which the instrumental fraction provided a solid foundation. Neil pulled no punches and climbed on the stage barrier during one song to come in close contact with the fans. CUTTHROAT was definitely a good choice for an opener and belongs on any watch list for talented acts to keep an eye on.

Music: 7
Performance: 7
Sound: 5
Light: 5
Total: 6 / 10


Take Offense

Up next was TAKE OFFENSE, a band originating also from California, this time the beautiful Chula Vista. TAKE OFFENSE is a quintet, and they has released two albums since their inception beginning this decade. Their latest release is an EP titled ‘Tensions on High’ from spring last year. Find out more about the band via /


Music & Performance
The stage break was refreshingly brief, as it took only 15 minutes for the next band to appear. TAKE OFFENCE took the Hardcore idea and added a huge dose of metal guitars to it, with head banging, synchronous moshing, extensive soloing, and everything that goes with it. Clearly, their neighbours from Venice, CA, SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, can be cited as a huge influence. The audience seemed to be quite ok with it. As more and more people entered the Turbinenhalle, the stage action and also the front of stage action grew more intense, and the first circle pits formed.

Music: 6
Performance: 6
Sound: 5
Light: 5
Total: 5.5 / 10


Siberian Meat Grinder

Spot no. 3 of this evening went to the Russian Thrash Metal band SIBERIAN MEAT GRINDER. Founded in 2011, SIBERIAN MEAT GRINDER formed in Moscow, and recruited their members from all over the country. So far, the band has released two albums, ‘Siberian Meat Grinder’ in 2015 and ‘Metal Bear Stomp’ in 2017. Aside from thrash Metal, which forms the basis for their songs, the influences of the band include diverse factors such as Ska, Stoner Rock, or Hip Hop. Check out / for more info.


Music & Performance
At 6:40pm when the band started to play, the Turbinenhalle was quite nicely filled. Singer Vladimir with his black skull mask revved up the crowd, and the band celebrated a huge Trash Speed Ska Punk Metal Fest, which definitely entertained the crowd. The band also got extra credits for ingenuity, as not only the band name is extremely memorable, but also the appearance of the ‘Bear Tsar’, someone in a huge Siberian bear costume, dressed in royal clothes, during the last song was quite impressive.

Music: 7
Performance: 8
Sound: 7
Light: 6
Total: 7 / 10



The fourth spot of the line-up was dedicated to BILLYBIO, the youngest band of legendary BIOHAZARD shouter and guitarist Billy Graziadei. While it has become relatively calm around the legendary Brooklyn Hardcore band, Billy seems to be incapable of containing the itch for making music and has channelled it - after two albums with POWERFLO - into the BILLYBIO release ‘Feed the Fire’, which was released end of last year. Check out /


Music & Performance
It seems quite a lot of people were actually pumped to see BILLYBIO, as space in front of the stage notably got scarce. And the blonde and muscled-up Hardcore icon delivered. Billy - not inhibited by microphone stands or cables as he was wearing a wireless mic attached to his ear – sped back and forth on stage – all while shredding his signature Gibson guitar and growling the lyrics of the songs. The only downside was that the sound mix was not well balanced, and there were slight glitches in the sound transmission. But people did not seem to mind, as the band played songs from their new album, as well as some old-school BIOHAZARD hits, such as ‘Punishment’, or ‘Shades of Grey’, which definitely got the crowd to move.


What really sent them over the edge was the double whammy of the ONYX cover ‘Slam’, and the title ‘Judgment Night’ from the same-titled soundtrack, both of which the band performed in conjunction with Neil from CUTTHROAT. This was definitely one of the first highlights of the night, which left a lot of people exhausted and sweaty in the mosh pit after the 30-minute gig. So people, who missed BILLYBIO on this gig, as well as during their support tour for LIFE OF AGONY last fall, should definitely put this band on their watch list.

Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 5
Light: 5
Total: 6.5 / 10


Booze & Glory

Band no. 5 was the London-based BOOZE & GLORY. They have dedicated themselves to typically British Oi!-Punk since their foundation in 2009. So far they have released four albums, the last of which is called ‘Chapter IV’ and has been released in 2017. Check out /


Music & Performance
After the intensive live show of BILLYBIO, the mood created by BOOZE & GLORY was a completely different one. The four Englishmen took their band name very seriously and converted the Turbinenhalle into a friendly Pub with the occasional flying beer cup, by playing their folk infused straight Oi!-Punk with big melodies and sing-a-longs. The audience loved it and celebrated together with the band during the 30-minute play time, and the band has clearly doubled down on their perfect fit for the upcoming support act for FLOGGING MOLLY.


01. London Skinhead Crew
02. The Time Is Now
03. Back on Track
04. Carry On
05. Violence and Fear
06. Simple
07. Live It Up
08. Only Fools Get Caught

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


Walls Of Jericho

Spot no. 6 went to the Detroit-based Metalcore band WALLS OF JERICHO. Founded back in 1998, the Michigan five-piece steadily built and increased their followership over the years by relentless touring and album releases. They are currently on album no. 6, which is named ‘No One Can Save You From Yourself’ in 2016. Go to /


Music & Performance
Going to a WALL OF JERICHO gig is not for the faint-hearted. Not having any previous knowledge of the band, I was by no way prepared for the treatment I was about to receive together with 3,000 other listeners. As soon as the band entered the stage and performed the song ‘Relentless’, the first half of the entire Turbinenhalle in front of the stage turned into a giant mosh pit. Front woman Candace Puopolo - despite measuring only 1.60 meters - developed an incredible stage presence, screaming and shouting while running back and forth on the stage.


She continuously encouraged people to “create a wall of crowd surfers” and climbed on the speakers and barriers in front of the stage to get in contact with her fans to get the Hardcore party started. By the time the band played their smash hit ‘The American Dream’, they had everyone dripping with sweat and screaming the vocals, as the energy levels inside the venue became sky high.


01. Relentless
02. All Hail The Dead
03. No One Can Save You From Yourself
04. Forever Militant
05. A Little Piece of Me
06. Playing Soldier Again
07. I Know Hollywood and You Ain’t It
08. A Trigger Full of Promises
09. Feeding Frenzy
10. A Day and a Thousand Years
11. The American Dream

Music: 8
Performance: 9
Sound: 7
Light: 8
Total: 8 / 10


Municipal Waste

Slot no. 7 was dedicated to Party Thrash Metal band MUNICIPAL WASTE from Richmond, Virgina. Formed back in 2000, they shot to fame by inciting a small riot during their first gig, and subsequently released six studio albums, of which the last one is from 2014 and is called ‘Slime and Punishment’. Check out or


Music & Performance
Judging from the outward appearance of all band members, one could have expected a LED ZEPPELIN cover band, as long hair, jeans vests with patches, and headbands were in plenty supply. However, the opener ‘Bourbon Discipline’ made clear the direction in which this was going: An insanely fast version of Hardcore Punk Thrash coupled with hilarious lyrics about alcohol consumption and related activities. Vocalist Tony Foresta who lends his trademark high-pitched and hoarse voice also to IRON REAGAN, did his best to fire up the audience. But the action level in front of the stage was remarkably calm compared to what was happening a few minutes ago during the WALLS OF JERICHO gig, which is unsurprising, as probably most protagonists had to make a quick stop at the beer bars to recover.


Their 30-minute set with an insane amount of songs stood out from the others, as MUNICIPAL WASTE were the only band to drink meaningful amounts of beer in between their songs.

01. Bourbon Discipline
02. Sadistic Magician
03. The Thrashin’ of the Christ
04. Poison the Preacher
05. Beer Pressure
06. Thrashing’s My Business... And Business Is Good
07. You’re Cut Off
08. Slime & Punishment
09. Breathe Grease
10. Mind Eraser
11. Unleash The Bastards
12. Born to Party

Music: 7
Performance: 7
Sound: 7
Light: 8
Total: 7.2 / 10



The very but final band on the line up were the Orange County, California melodic Hardcore veterans IGNITE. Founded in pre-historic 1993, IGNITE became an icon among the socially and politically aware Hardcore bands for supporting environmental conservation efforts and vegetarianism. IGNITE has released five studio albums so far. The latest is called ‘A War Against You’ and has been released in 2016. Check out / for more information.


Music & Performance
The five-piece band IGNITE presented itself in remarkable shape. Singer Zoltán “Zoli” Téglás commanded the stage with his presence and exhibited incredible talent and positive energy even after all these years. He also did not shy away from political statements, dedicating the song ‘My Judgement Day’ to all extremists, Nazis as well as Communists. For the BAD RELIGION cover ‘We’re Only Gonna Die’, the band welcomed Billy Graziadei from BILLYBIO on stage, who performed the song together with them. Besides the trademark melodic Hardcore songs, the band also excelled at slower songs, such as the ballad ‘Live for Better Days’, which made their 45-minute set very fascinating to witness.


Thus, IGNITE were a worthy Co-headliner of this full evening of Hardcore music.

01. Poverty for All
02. Veteran
03. Fear Is Our Tradition
04. Let It Burn
05. This Is a War
06. My Judgement Day
07. Know Your History
08. Nothing Can Stop Me
09. A Place Called Home
10. We’re Only Gonna Die (Bad Religion cover)
11. Descend
12. Live for Better Days
13. Bleeding

Music: 9
Performance: 8
Sound: 9
Light: 8
Total: 8.5 / 10


Sick Of It All

Now we are really getting into history. SICK OF IT ALL definitely belong into the all textbooks explaining music heritage of Hardcore, as they epitomize the East Coast version of Hardcore since 1986. Over the years the band has released a whopping number of twelve albums, covering three decades from the start with ‘Blood, Sweat and No Tears’ until the most recent album ‘Wake the Sleeping Dragon!’, which came out a few weeks ago in November 2018. Check out / for all the details.


Music & Performance
At little past 11:30 pm, after six hours of live music, the lights went dark for the last time that night, and the band members jumped on stage and immediately began playing their new single ‘Inner Vision’ from their most recent album. Especially guitarist Pete Koller exhibited energy levels, as if he had been waiting all day for this, as he sped over the stage in circles, occasionally helping out his brother Lou on vocals. SICK OF IT ALL seemed determined to squeeze in as many songs as possible into their set time of sixty minutes. Lou used the short breaks between each song to fire up the crowd, and the audience happily obliged, sending lots of beer cups flying and forming circle pits.


Generally, the mood was very upbeat on and off stage. The families of the band members watched from the stage side and visibly enjoyed the performance, Singer Tony Foresta from MUNICIPAL WASTE sped over the stage on an electric scooter, and for the very but last song ‘Scratch the Surface’, many members of that night’s bands formed a solid wall of death, all celebrating one big party. At 0:30 am, Lou announced ‘Step Down’ as the last song without any chance for an encore, and there was no audible resistance from the fatigued crowd after a total of seven hours Hardcore music.


01. Inner Vision
02. Clobberin’ Time
03. Take the Night Off
04. Us vs. Them
05. Self Important Shithead
06. Machete
07. Road Less Traveled
08. Black Venom
09. That Crazy White Boy Shit
10. Sanctuary
11. Wake the Sleeping Dragon
12. Rat Pack
13. Call to Arms
14. The Snake (Break Free)
15. My Life
16. Bull’s Anthem
17. Uprising Nation
18. Injustice System
19. Good Lookin’ Out
20. Busted
21. Braveheart
22. Scratch the Surface
23. Step Down

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


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All pictures by Tanja Schilling

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