Last Sunday night I practically ran from work over to the Royale just hoping to get to the venue in time to see Turnstile’s set. It was raining pretty hard in Boston and by the time I got there I was soaked- but my mood wasn’t dampened in the slightest. The Royale is hardly the ideal venue to see Turnstile in; it’s huge, there’s security everywhere, the sound system isn’t ideal for a hardcore show, and a pretty decent barricade lays between the crowd and stage. It’s definitely not the Hardcore Stadium (an empty community room with a 6-inch stage)- where I last saw them in Boston.
Nevertheless, Turnstile is Turnstile, so the show was sold out to a 600 something amount of kids who wanted to hear the groovy, 80’s influenced hardcore band play- regardless of the venue. The standing floor was packed to the brim with people and I gave up on apologizing as I shoved to the center of the crowd while bassist “Freaky Franz” checked the mics. The crowd was buzzing with excitement as frontman Brendan Yates bounded onstage, wasting no time in getting their set started.
They played an eclectic set mixed with old and new, starting off with “Fazed Out” which immediately opened up a pit in the crowd filled with flying bodies and limbs, transitioning into an older “Canned Heat” that kept up the energy. There was never a dull moment during Turnstile’s set and all members radiated an equal amount of raw energy complimenting the crowds excitement and dedication to the band. As the crowd struggled to keep the pit open for the popular oldie “Keep It Moving”, Brendan passed the mic to several members of the crowd as he is often known to do at shows. Turnstile has a unique knack of making the crowd feel like they’re as much a part of the band as the actual members are, crashing through any barrier that usually exists between the typical band/fan relationship.
They shut their set down with the new favorite “Blue By You”, a song with more melodic than punching vocals over contrasting upbeat instrumentals that the crowd can still two-step and stomp to. All in all, another wicked, adrenaline filled 45 minutes to hold us over until the next time Turnstile cruises through Boston. – Jenne Ratto-Murray