LIVE: Stick To Your Guns / Being As An Ocean @ O2 Academy, Islington

By Christopher Lee

Following the release of the bands sixth album ‘True View’ back in October of this year, American hardcore heroes Stick to Your Guns have reached new heights with their blend of emotional lyrics and super charged riffs, making them amongst the best on the current hardcore scene. This tour see them out on the road in support of one of the best albums of 2017 and they’ve brought with them the equally incredible Being As An Ocean.

It’s been a bit of a rocky road for Californian band Being As An Ocean. Following the self release of the bands fourth studio album ‘Waiting for Morning to Come’ the bands guitarist Tyler Ross announced that he had bought the rights to the album himself, which caused a lengthy delay in its release. Fans were finally treated to it some 5 months after the original release date and it didn’t disappoint. However the guys never fail to deliver live and their set tonight was no different, the fact that they were supporting may have taken some by surprise but their emotionally charged energy is a joy to behold on any stage, at any time.

Joel Quartuccio’s lyrics have a way of reaching down into the depths of your soul and pulling you into the moment that few can match. The band produce a sound so heavy in places that you almost feel trapped, being drawn in and then hit in the gut by brutal riff after riff. Needless to say the crowd react in the only way they know how with pit after pit after pit. They may have been a support act but Being As An Ocean bring pure excellence to the line up tonight and set up the final set of the night perfectly.

With barely a moment to recover the senses Stick to Your Guns take to the stage, instantly making it their own and launching into a number of tracks from ‘True Views.’ The crowd react in true hardcore fashion with wave after wave of circle pits and crowd surfing. The energy in the room only seems to increase with every breakdown the band throw at them, peaking with classic track ‘Amber’ which sees almost the whole room turned into one big sea of movement.

It was reported that vocalist Jesse Barnett had been suffering with a throat infection but this was certainly not reflected in any way throughout a robust set, which only goes to reassert the bands commitment to providing the best night possible to their fans. After supporting sets with the likes of Architects and Parkway Drive it’s almost a breath of fresh air to see the guys step out of the shadows of some of the biggest hardcore bands around and into their own spotlight. Something that they are long deserving of. 2017 was certainly a huge year for Stick to Your Guns and may they only go from strength to strength in 2018.