For over the past 20 years, at the end of April, in the small village of Meerhout, Belgium, punks and hardcore kids of different nationalities gather for a festival specifically catered for them. From it’s small beginnings as a pop and rock festival, Groezrock has grown into one of the most well renowned punk and hardcore festivals in the world. Now in its 21st year, we at Already Heard venture to Belgium, to marvel at the bands, sights, and sounds.
The first band to kick start off this adventure for Already Heard at Groezrock 2013 is the rock ‘n roll punk stylings of Texan lot The Riverboat Gamblers. Ecstatic and full of energy, the band provides the perfect dose of warming entertainment for this afternoon’s crowd. Every member of the band delivers a tightly wound performance, breathing life into every note they wield, and not willing to commit to anything less. Tracks like ‘Hey! Hey! Hey!’ and ‘On Again Off Again’ are brimming with catchiness, and this is all sealed by the bounding stature of frontman Mike Wiebe. (3.5/5)
Having recently announced an indefinite hiatus, Streetlight Manifesto play one of their last European shows to an eager ska-loving crowd. The concept of fun is the running theme across their entire set, as the band brilliantly provides chorus led chants and boisterous skank-mosh activity. The switching moods and rhythms that the band can maintain in songs like ‘We Will Fall Together’ and ‘Everything Goes Numb’ deliver something that is exciting and grandly assumes their position as a festival band. (4/5)
The moment the first few bass laden notes of ‘The King Is Dead’ are played, a sudden rush escalates amongst the crowd who widen a largely prepared mosh pit for A Wilhelm Scream. A high octane performance is delivered like an adrenaline shot to the heart as circle pits and scrambling increase. The band continues to tease with new material for an upcoming album via a couple of songs, but the album can wait as it’s the here and now that matters. Finishing on fan favourite ‘Famous Friends And Fashion Drunks’ the band once again proves to be a phenomenal live machine. (3.5/5)
So here it is! My first part of my Groezrock adventure.
The first day in summary was hectic and exciting. I saw some incredible bands, and broke my nose.