The Fall of Troy
It's been a little under a year since The Fall Of Troy were in Cleveland touring for the 10-year anniversary of their cult classic post-hardcore opus, Doppelganger.
And having finally released their comeback album, OK
, earlier this year, a Grog Shop full of faithful hardcore fans and metalheads was more than ready for the next round Thursday night, exploding into a floor-spanning moshpit at the breakneck opening of "The Holy Tape." Frontman Thomas Erak dazzled everyone with his dexterous guitar skills throughout the band's set, from doling out fresh new songs like "A Single Word" and "An Ode To The Masochists" and polishing off classic cuts like "Laces Out, Dan!" and "Cut Down All The Trees...," to improvising solos in "401k" and "Macaulay McCulkin."
The Fall Of Troy further sculpted their setlist to be seamless with bluesy interludes and reprising familiar hooks from "Act One, Scene One" and "Mouths Like Sidewinder Missiles" with dulcet tones more soulful than psychotic, giving the crowd moments to catch a breath before whipping them back into moshing rambunctiousness. The only thing to gum up the works was when a beer was thrown at Erak halfway through their set, immediately ceasing the performance so Erak could call out the anonymous shithead — "Don't ruin this night for everyone here!" — before picking up where they left off and keeping on without any other interruptions.
Prior to the headliner, the entire show was full of eclectic energy. Opening for the night first was Illustrations, a post-hardcore quintet from Austin, Texas. (Like TFOT's new album, you can pick up their debut album for the price of your choice.) Laying a mix of fleeting grindcore moments, slogging doom metal sections, and noise-play interludes akin to Deftones and Glassjaw, they made a good first impression with their debut performance in the city of rock 'n' roll. Taking the stage after them was '68, the relatively new punk project from Josh Scogin, of former The Chariot and Norma Jean fame. Though the humble duo were outnumbered by the amps surrounding them, Scogin utterly dominated the stage with his showmanship, and from his erratic guitar playing, to incrementally deconstructing his drummer's kit at their closing song while the drummer kept playing, all of his stage antics were worthy of the highlight reel.