PHILADELPHIA, PA—Leftöver Crack are one of those bands that not only make great music, but stand for something big. There are some things that are larger than the music when it comes to these punks, and those things include activism and human equality. Extreme messages of anti-racism, anti-sexism, anti-religion, and anti-homophobia are what you will find at any of their shows. While some of their records have made it into the hearts of many, it’s their live performance that takes the cake. I’ve seen them play three times thus far, though this show was possibly the most memorable.

The show was in Philadelphia, and it must be noted that it was not held in the nicest of areas. I’ve driven around some pretty nasty towns in my day, but this was one of the few that made me feel quite nervous. I barely made it on time to catch the set. After finding parking, I walked up to the venue hoping that there were still some tickets left at the door. I got lucky and found out that they were still available, and that the two-hour drive was worth it. I strolled into The Barbary and to my pleasure, found out that it was a tiny, very dark, cold, dirty place—a perfect fitting for a crust punk show.

The opener finished up his set and I made my way to the front to await one of my favorite bands. I noticed that there was an absence of the infamous Ezra Kire on guitar, and to my assumption, it was due to his busy schedule with his most recent project, Morning Glory. In any case, this wasn’t going to stop me from enjoying the show. The replacement guitarist was just as vicious and full of angst as Ezra could have ever been.

They began the set the same way they always do, with an introduction done instrumentally until singer Scott “Stza Crack” Sturgeon made his way to the stage with his screaming vocals. After the opening statement was made, they played a few tracks off of their last record, 2004’s Fuck World Trade. One thing that is special about any Leftöver Crack show is that you get more bang for your buck, as they are known to play Choking Victim songs as well. At the end of the set, they played “Crack Rock Steady,” off No Gods, No Managers into my personal favorite, “Suicide,” off Choking Victim’s first EP. The highlight of the show for me was when they unveiled a new track that seemed to have no current title. The song was an instrumental piece and fell more on the heavy, thrash metal side. Following was an announcement made by the band that they would have a new record sometime next year.

It’s no wonder this band has been barred from playing many venues across NYC, as they show plenty of potential for destruction and chaos. It was pouring upon leaving The Barbary, and I realized that it may have been one of the best Leftöver Crack shows I had ever been to. The sound was immaculate and the crowd was as rowdy as ever. There was a rebellious feel throughout the place and horrible smells of punk rock. I’ll never forget that day in Philly seeing one of my favorite bands play their hearts out.

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