This past Friday evening Title Fight’s fall tour rolled through New London, Connecticut’s soon to be closing (again) El ‘N Gee Club. The show opened up with Slingshot Dakota. Although I did not see them perform live, I heard them while standing outside the venue waiting for a friend. They at glimpses reminded me of The Cure, The Get Up Kids, and The Anniversary.
My entrance into the venue was timed perfectly to the beginnings of Portland, Maine’s Cruel Hand. Having seen them before I knew what to expect for the next 30 plus minutes. Cruel Hand delivered a high energy, intense performance. Covering tracks off their recently released EP Born Into Debt, We All Owe A Death, and my personal favorite Prying Eyes. Their perfect mix of New York Hardcore attitude and West Coast thrash riffs was the peak of heaviness during the evening. The floor during Cruel Hand opened up to the point where attendees where relegated to the bar area and merch table corridor. Frontman Chris Linkovich made everyone feel welcome throughout their set talking about standing for who you are and embracing what makes you unique from everyone else. He made a point to reflect on the different types of bands on this tour and how they all like what each other plays and so forth.
Next up was Balance and Composure, a huge reason for my attendance at this show. B&C are one of the genres up and coming acts. Coming off the release of their immediately popular The Things We Think We’re Missing, B&C are primed to be heading towards more mainstream attention and bigger tours (i.e. opening for Coheed and Cambria later this fall.) Mixing equal parts Brand New-esque indie/emo rock and ‘90s grunge/guitar crunch, they produced a wall of sound overflowing with heavy hitting from drummer Bailey Van Ellis, intertwined with guitar lines from both Andrew Slaymaker and Erik Peterson, and beautiful emotive lyics . B&C’s set covered tracks off their newest effort released by No Sleep Records along with favorites off their first full-length, the critically acclaimed, Separation.
Title Fight then took the stage. Their brand of pop-punk meets post-hardcore had attendees stage diving and climbing each other from the second they began playing. Covering work from all of their releases including their most well known EP Kingston to their most recent effort, last spring’s Floral Green. The highlight of the night was when the quartet ripped through “27”, which had the entire club (myself included) belting out the chorus “I said your name 27 times!”
All in all it was a great evening of music. Balance and Composure definitely stole the show with their high energy, emotional, wall of sound performance. If you ever get a chance to see any of these acts, do yourself a favor and go. You will not be disappointed. I promise.
If you want a taste, check out Balance & Composure live filmed at the Boston stop of the tour by Hate5Six below: