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Live Review: Turnstile, Citizen, Ceremony, Ekulu, & Truth Cult

Review & Photos By: Casey Conemac

Artist: Turnstile, Citizen, Ceremony, Ekulu, & Truth Cult

Date: May 2nd, 2022

Location: Roseland Theater, Portland Oregon

The Roseland Theater has to be one of the best venues in the Portland area, downstairs you’ll find a concession stand of pizza and soda on tap. Once you get checked in, you’ll walk up stairs to find a the main stage with plenty of room to dance your heart out. There is a VIP lounge up stairs that serves alcohol. It is also worth noting it’s the best seat in the house for you have full view of the stage and are able to be seated.

I knew I couldn’t miss out on this show. Turnstile has been on everyone’s radar since last year when they released their second album “Glow On”. They also managed to sell out the whole tour in just a matter of 2 weeks.

Truth Cult was the first one’s up, hauling all the way from Washington D.C. their sound was heavily rooted in punk and hardcore. Those crunchy riffs with aggressive in your face noise that makes you want bang your head against the wall and revolt. It reminded me of the early days of Bad Brains coming up and making a statement for human rights. Politically fueled by the world around them, they channeled their energy into fast paced aggressive music that you couldn’t help but feel you wanted to be a part of. I see a bright future for Truth Cult as they continue to grind the night life circuit.

Ekulu were more of a hardcore band that had a distinct sound. Thrash does come to mind with the harsh vocals, double tempo drumbeats, and scorching hot guitar solos. There is a type of method to the madness of playing hard and as fast as possible. Everyone was hand picked and had a particular place on this show bill.

The real hidden gem of this show was Ceremony. My favorite genre of punk is the new wave sound that Joy Division and The Germs pioneered in the 80’s. It was very simple, have a good bass line, a good drumbeat, and the rough around the edges voice. The thing that was so great about this genre for the time is that their was always room for experimentation. People weren’t afraid to try new things to progress the music into a new direction. The lead singer ended up jumping off stage and engaged with audience screaming the lyrics into the fans’ faces.

By the time Citizen took to the stage, the crowd packed in quite a bit and everyone was fueled ready to get their mosh on. Citizen have been running the circuit for awhile now, so most people at the show had a good idea of who they were. Over the years their sound had progressed from being more grungy to a indie staple. Some song highlights included “Jet”, “I Want to Kill You”, & “How Does It Feel”.

I can’t really encapsulate into words what it’s like to be at a Turnstile show. It’s a chaotic mess of awesomeness. I haven’t experienced a band that puts in so much energy into their act. “Glow On” has gone on to be probably one of the best indie rock records of the last decade. There is good reason why so many people flock to their shows. In the mix of the chaos, they manage to bring everyone together for the love of each other and the music that makes you feel good about yourself. For a band that has only been around for 10 years, they have pulled in crowds that you would think be achievable by like heavy hitters like Kiss or Metallica. It was an amazing moment for me to be a part of this show in it’s entirety.

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