Two of the standout records of 2015 from the worlds of emo and post-hardcore coming together for a co-headline tour was always going to go down a storm, so there’s no surprise that The Haunt tonight is packed like sardines with attendees at the back of the room craning for a view.
Some might be curious as to why the considerably more-established mewithoutYou aren’t closing the night, but they do get their own hour long set which within a few songs descends into frontman Aaron Weiss throwing himself atop the barrier-less crowd.
His performance alternates between acoustic guitar, vocal FX echoing through the room and spinning around the stage free with the mic hand-held, something that exemplifies their setlist – switching between their earlier more forceful material and their recent subdued songs.
This does give a more varied and dynamic setlist, but, as you’d expect, it’s that more post-hardcore sound that the crowd really go off too and makes the real connection, with fan favourite ‘January 1979’ met with lyrics screamed back and cheers upon its finish, and ‘In A Sweater Poorly Knit’ welcomed by a huge sing-a-long.
It’s generally a good set, even a good portion of the crowd seem satisfied enough to leave already, which is a shame as The World Is A Beautiful Place & I’m No Longer Afraid To Die’s performance is something special – an upwards curve of musicianship and tightly performed post-rock dynamics.
The sprawling eight man band leaves little room for movement on stage and must be a sound technician’s nightmare, but the clever arrangement shines through with all four guitars shimmering against each other.
TWIABP start with ‘January 10th 2014’ and ‘Heartbeat In The Brain’, showcasing two of their best and later another banger from ‘Harmlessness’ pushes the energy further – ‘Rage Against The Dying Light’ with massive group vocals and tighter than tight guitar stabs syncopating their way through the Steven Buttery’s beats.
The latter half of their set has some really special moments with the band dying to silence, crashing in like a meteor hitting impact, and then resolving back to silence and it’s impressive as hell.
Impossible to ignore as the set goes on is the connection between band and crowd; ‘We Need More Skulls’ brings intense crescendos and sing-a-longs overflowing with emotion, as does their closer ‘Getting Sodas’.
Walking off to a wall of noise (yeah, that post-rock cliche is still being done) they return for a modestly unplanned encore, which isn’t quite as punchy a finish. Between those two hour-long sets, consider any itching for cathartic mixes of emo, post-rock and screamo well and truly scratched.