MANHATTAN, NY—A tour that has been receiving a lot of buzz lately has been the most recent Circa Survive excursion, with support from Balance And Composure, O’ Brother, and Touché Amoré. While I was told by many that all of these bands, especially Circa Survive, put on fantastic shows, I went mainly to see Touché Amoré. Don’t get me wrong; all of the other bands were definitely entertaining and put on great performances, but my suspicion was indeed correct in that the hit of the night was the band I went there to see.

I had been looking forward to this show for about a month, and had no idea of what to expect, which was nice for a change in the sense of objectivity. During the first two openers, I decided to hang back and watch from the balcony since I was unfamiliar with their music and could get a better view of the whole picture. Maybe I would have gotten more out of each set had I been down in the pit with the rest, but who knows?

After Balance And Composure finished up their set, I immediately tried to get as close to the stage as I could while Touché Amoré started setting up. The crowd went wild upon the first chord, and I got lost in a sea of violence. Not a single moment passed where somebody wasn’t trying to crawl on top of others in an attempt to scream into the mic with singer Jeremy Bolm. I have come to terms with the notion that music is something that is not just heard, but felt as well. During this performance, I felt a strong vibe that I’ve only been able to experience a handful of times. This was the kind of feeling where I question walking away from the chaos going on around me, yet am unable to due to the nature of the aggressive music coming from the band. Perhaps the greatest aspect of this show was that I was pretty much oblivious to their music prior to attending. All I knew was that I dug their sound. It was easy to see that the band was just as into what was happening as the crowd was by watching their presence on stage. Within the second song, Bolm jumped backwards straight into the crowd, showing an act of true post-hardcore nature. I’ve often found something special about this band in how not only their lyrics are both clearly heard and strongly felt, but the music behind them is fast and heavy.

Walking out of the crowd of savage lunatics, I was completely drenched in sweat and could barely breathe. I walked away feeling like I had just experienced the most intense crowd of my life. Music has come a long way with its evolution, and the genre of hardcore has made leaps and bounds. What once was a circle pit has now become a room full of people jumping on top of each other like a pack of crazy apes going for the last banana. If it wasn’t for the intensity of fans screaming out the words to songs and that thumping feeling coming from my chest, this adrenaline-induced performance from Touché Amoré would not be possible.

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