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Sick of It All / Snapcase: live in New Yorklive in New York (2011)
Reviewer Rating: 4
Contributed by: InaGreendaseBrian
(others by this writer | submit your own)
Merauder was well into the swing of things when I'd finally arrived at Webster Hall—and I do mean the swing of things. Puns aside, the band was blasting through their notoriously hard, heavily metal-influenced hardcore that had burly dudes moving in every direction. Their vocalist's shout sounds even more demonic and bellowed than most of their studio recordings, and it makes the band's overall sound come off even more like an aural threat. Maybe I'm just too frail for Merauder, but I did catch myself bobbing my head at times. And the on-stage moshing by their crew/friends/etc. was certainly entertaining, but it was kind of a "yikes" moment when some shirtless, longhair fellow dove over the first row of people standing on the floor against the stage and belly-flopped down onto the floor, carried out by concerned witnesses.
A rare appearance from Snapcase was cool enough, but it shouldn't be neglected to mention that Sick of It All was celebrating their 25th anniversary with this sold-out show. (They're as old as I am. Christ.) Impressive, obviously, yet even more so that the band haven't lost a step. Yeah, I imagine their older, less attentive fans are probably less stoked on the last few albums, but no one can really deny that they still bring it live, with Lou Koller's voice an ageless wonder. Stage dives multiplied from Snapcase's set (albeit often sloppier), but the band members weaved in and out of them without missing a beat.
I was disappointed to not see Anthony Civarelli on stage at all, thinking maybe we'd get a random "Can't Wait One Minute More" cover. It's cool; SoIA played plenty of their own choice material, including a few from my favorite LP of theirs, 1997's Built to Last, as well some of the more brutal moments from their recent albums, "Machete" and "Take the Night Off", which the band's more rotund, older fans felt compelled to get somewhat ignorant to. The scrappier take of cuts like "Scratch the Surface" or "Built to Last" certainly felt like the highlights, though, showing off the band's keen, long-cultured sense of punk energy and dynamic melodicism.
The best part? No encore. They shot off some confetti and streamers during closer "Us vs. Them" as a pat on the back, then humbly exited. Good show, and good show.
Set list (9:16-10:20):
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