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Neck Deep, Drain, Bearings + Higher Power - Roadrunner (Boston) - February 16, 2024

20 February 2024

Neck Deep showed up in Boston after Covid killed their previous date, and an all-ages swarmed into Roadrunner. Singer Ben Barlow marveled that the biggest venue they played on this tour resulted in them “selling out this bitch” and an army of hands with large Sharpie-drawn Xs were raised in celebratory fashion.

Emo-fueled punk isn’t the most Brit-centric music form that springs to mind but Neck Deep showed they were masters at the game, with the perfect mix of singalong choruses, chugging guitar riffs that were modeled from Blink-182 with a knowing nod to Descendents and a physical stage presence of jumps, twirls and high kicks. “Kali Ma” got the crowd supercharged, with one woman on a determined mission to crowd surf her way on top of the people in front of her and then over the barricade to the mic, Barlow happily obliging to surrender vocal duties for a chorus. The wait was worth it, the pent up energy of the crowd fueling the band and each other.

Drain started their set by saying “for the next 30 minutes, there are no rules. You can do whatever the fuck you want.” And while wanton violence didn’t occur, a sort of gleeful chaos swept through the crowd and Sammy Ciaramitaro fanned those flames for the duration of their set. Down off the stage and into the crowd, he demonstrated why he had thick dark scabs on each shin. The man lives to connect with the fans, and doesn’t give a damn what sort of pain might be in that equation. Part Slayer pinched harmonics, part brutal riffs like Nails but delivered with a ‘fuck yes we are all in this together’ grin, the band delivered all the feels.

Higher Power (also from the UK) and Bearings (hailing from Ontario) got the night going and the kids were bopping up front, but it was clear they needed a bit more seasoning in songs and delivery when they were done and we got to see what followed. More photos of all bands below:

Neck Deep:



Higher Power: