Capsize, The Elijah and Being As An Ocean. A tour that you shouldn’t miss if you’re a fan of melodic hardcore. First because this is an excellent line up but also because this is The Elijah’s farewell tour. We made our way to Antwerp (BE) sold-out show at JC Kavka that was a special one, since While She Sleeps exceptionally joined the bill as headliners.
Things kick off with the Californians of Capsize, invited to this tour by their fellow friends in Being As An Ocean. It’s not easy to open a show, especially overseas when you don’t even know what to expect. The audience wasn’t very receptive, most of the people in presence never heard about Capsize before. However, these guys honorably accomplished their mission with a honest set. The band was technically good and committed. Musically, it fitted what was yet to come, so it made an enjoyable warm up to the rest of the evening. If you have the opportunity to discover Capsize, make sure you check them out! They are well on their way to bigger things.
Next up are The Elijah, a british band that we already had the occasion to see earlier this year. We were wondering how would the audience react to their show, as their live performances are very special, truly emotional, deep and intense. The Elijah have a whole isolated universe in which they take you in through some tortured screams and powerful clear vocals but also terribly beautiful melodies. The setting holds their mark as it’s an obvious insight into their sense of estheticism, with pure and sober lightening and black and white images playing on a white background ‘screen’. That’s probably a band you either like or not on stage because to some it might sound slow and boring while to others, it’s just the most beautiful thing they witnessed in their life. You have to be a fan of touching, moving dynamics to really get into this type of performance and from what we’ve seen and that seem to have been a strike concerning people in Antwerp. However, some people sang, screamed, absorbed the wonderful lyrics and melodies in songs such as In Fear or I Destroyed, making a fair goodbye to a band that called it quit way too early.
After this calm episode, let’s get rowdy again with Being As An Ocean. This is a band who cannot be overlooked when talking about melodic hardcore nowadays,. We expected a lot form their performance and they have definitely not disappointed. Catching our attention from the very first notes, it’s obvious that the kids here were also eagerly waiting for them. A lot of stage diving and crowd surfing punctuated the show from the beginning to the end, everyone’s captivated if not in some sort of ecstasy, trying to get the closer possible to the band. Because yes, Joel Quartuccio gladly shared his microphone more than once to anyone who approached him on stage to sing or scream a few lyrics. We were happy to witness that incredible harmony between the artists and the fans, with high points such as in This Loneliness Won’t Be The Death Of Me, which is lyrically a song that a lot of people can relate to. In fact, the crowd loved singing this song along and that was quite beautiful. In terms of stage presence, Being As An Ocean are incredible performers and that’s probably a factor of the madness that captured the audience. Being As An Ocean is one of the biggest and humblest bands of the genre at the moment and this status is well deserved judging by what they gave us that day.
It’s 10:30 already and the headliners were about to hit the stage. Back form a long summer at USA’s Vans Warped Tour, the Doncaster boys seem to have missed the intimate club shows they’re used play here in Europe, which led them into that small club shows run through England, Belgium and The Netherlands. Remaining true to themselves, While She Sleeps took the stage by storm form the second they hit it, even with an injured guitarist (Mat Welsh). As usual, their set is short, but extremely efficient. An intelligent combination of their most successful numbers such as the opener Death Toll, the classic The North Stands For Nothing which is always a major highlight in terms of audience’s singing involvement or the touching Our Courage, Our Cancer. An overexcited band, playing to and with a packed room, is always a pleasure to be part of. Things got wild until the end, from stage dives to wall of deaths and circle pits, frontman Lawrence Taylor didn’t even need to ask for it, the kids anticipated all of it. Following their standard practice, While She Sleeps shared a lot with their audience on that night, when bass player Aaran McKenzie jumped off stage followed by Taylor’s stage dives. Seven Hills is the grand finale of an eventful show, with half of the sold-out venue joining the band on stage.
Now that they have a consistent repertory, we wish While She Sleeps‘s headliners lasted a bit longer.
It’s not everyday that we go to shows during which we can witness such an incredible sense of sharing between the artists and their fans, in such a great atmosphere. Successful evening!