Fucked Up, Trash Talk

Kyle Ellison 09/08/2010

It's not often you get two of the most world's most exciting hardcore bands in a room together, making this one of the standout events of the year. Indeed, Hoxton's Bar & Kitchen is packed fuller than I've ever seen before; with the word going around that the venue is well over capacity. So, with the stage set and the crowd in place, all there is left is for these two bands to live up to their hefty reputations.

First up is Trash Talk, currently residing in London for just over a month while they play a string of UK and European shows. The band have clearly made a name for themselves as an aggressive live band, as a large semi circle forms around the stage, leaving just the diehard fans to flail around in the middle. Even so, the band's performance is engaging as ever, gradually involving more of the crowd whether that was their decision or not. Frontman Lee Spielman is typically fascinating to watch, but it's the two guitarists which contribute the most musically. Equally adept at setting the pace slow and doomy or fast and thrashy, Trash Talk's performance is among the very best,
rounded off on the night by an almost anthemic run through of live favourite 'Sacramento is Dead'.

Tonight's headliners are Fucked Up, a band who never fail to amaze me no matter how many times I see them play. As ever with their live performance, it's very much the Damian Abraham show, who spends the opening two songs on stage before getting down amongst the people. The stark contrast between tonight's two singers becomes very apparent
seeing them both in the same night. Spielman's confrontational style is thrilling but unwelcoming to those not committed to the cause, While Abraham, meanwhile, seems to take great joy in joining people together. Fucked Up play through a selection of live favourites, including rousing renditions of 'Crusades' and 'Police' which finds Abraham standing on the bar being sprayed by the soda gun. Whether or not this is the best Fucked Up performance I've ever seen is almost completely irrelevant, as there are few bands that can offer such a resolute guarantee of a great night out. Finishing on a cover version
of “the best British punk song of all time”, their take on the Sex Pistol's 'Bodies' sends the crowd home with buzzing ears but smiles on their faces.