If ten years ago someone had told me about a music festival like the one I've been to last Sunday, I probably wouldn't have believed them at all.
Maybe, that's partly one of the issues that cements most society to these days; the thought of something not existing in any shape or form stops us from actually creating it in the very first place.
But the reality is an easy one. To see change and innovation in our community, we must create and maintain one intentionally and this is what the Corpus family is all about.
While at home and anxiously getting ready for the "In Broad Daylight" festival, I made sure to have all my gear ready and fully charged: from my phone to my camcorder, audio recorder, and digital camera - all I knew was that everything needed to work perfectly, as my body and soul could already feel the historical importance of this event even before it had started.
The drive to the venue was short and smooth but still gave me the chance to aggressively headbang in the car to some tracks from my favorite artists in the festival's lineup. Quiet the way to get into a "festival mood," I thought, while naively unaware of what was about to unfold in front of my eyes for the next 8 hours.
The music kicked off at 3 p.m. with a performance from Atlanta-based hardcore band Symbiote, who, in my opinion, are doing an incredible job in bringing that raw hardcore sound back to life in their city. I recommend you check out their 2021 live album, "Live From The Dungeon."
Symbiote live show was followed by another energetic performance from the NYC-based band Shawty, led by singer, mc, Dj, and overall multi-disciplinary artist Noble Spell, whose also one of CORPUS's long-time members.
One thing I instantly appreciated about the festival was the presence of unique DJs who were able to bring their specific unique sounds in between live sets and managed to make people dance and feel constantly entertained by music.
The silence was a total stranger. The festival, which emphasized mixing new styles and cultures, became a sanctuary of sound.
As Osyris Dj set ended, the crowd gathered and approached the stage intimately in view of Chicago-based band BUGGIN.
BUGGIN. Photo by @muhstee This was my second time seeing BUGGIN live, and it was even more breathtaking than the first time. The vocals of lead singer Bryanna were absolutely on point and all the band members executed each song perfectly while bringing out all the energy that you feel when listening to their records. It is not something that all artists can achieve, so it shouldn't be taken lightly. Everyone who loves music and is not afraid of trying new things should get into BUGGIN and just thank me later.
The next highlight of the day for me was the live performance of artist Lust Sick Puppy, as they were able to bring together a very diverse crowd that knew every single word of their lyrics. Emotional nonetheless.
Lust Sick Puppy. Photo by @muhstee As my friend's eyes teared at the vision of someone who looked like us, I started thinking about the importance of representation in the music realm and how Lust Sick Puppy is becoming the voice of a whole generation of black misfits. We've always existed; we just never had the right platform to spread the seed of our existence.
After this very sweaty live performance, Dj, stylist, and designer GAWD blessed our ears with a 15-20 minutes set, setting the vibe for the next act.
The time arrived for President Evil to take over the stage. I am very familiar with the band as their lead singer, producer, and bass player is also a member of Show Me the Body, and their most brilliant drummer Andrew Tassin is a good friend of mine who also plays the drums in Dog Breath.
President Evil. Photo by @muhstee Maybe it was the location of the festival at "The Ruins" of the Knockdown Center, or maybe it was the sunset approaching and the very light breeze swinging through my hair after many hours of intense static sun; whatever that magic was, President Evil sound was resonating with the atmosphere of that moment.
The stage was blessed by many other performers, such as Militaire Gun and WIFIGawd, with the ladder bringing the perfect enthusiasm and upbeat vitality in view of Philly native hardcore SOUL GLO.
The band ensured very little time was reserved for resting between songs.
Lyrics were powerful yet indecipherable, while chords from guitarist Gigi shred and invigorated the whole sound, transporting you back to what could have been a 1986 NYC punk hardcore show.
Soul Glo. Photo by @muhstee
Every inch of my body felt it, and my blood started pumping through my veins, asking me to let it all out: the stress, the anxiety, the worries…it all had to go, and so it did.
In 30 seconds, I had manage to put all my essential belongings in a safe space, tied my hair into a ponytail, took my rings off, and ran into the mosh pit like there was no tomorrow.
Not bad for being the first time seeing this band live. I am now an official lifelong super fan.
It is now 8:45 p.m., and the Corpus family had no intention of letting the audience rest. As Tripp Jones hit the stage, I grabbed my cameras and positioned myself to film this long-awaited set.
Tripp Jones. Photo by @puchi_ortiz
I've been interested about Tripp Jones for a while now, as I believe him to be an inspiration for many more prominent artists nowadays who found themselves exploring a more sinister way to express their feelings in music while adding hip-hop and rap sensibility.
Lastly, with the sun having retreated below the skyline and the crowd at its largest of the day, the evening concluded with a crowd favorite. The extraordinary music of Show Me The Body truly means a lot to thousands of fans around the globe, but it will always mean a little more here in New York.
The audience moshed and crowd-surfed throughout the whole show, singing every single lyric.
One could barely stand restlessly and people's energy was connecting in motion to one another like never before.
Show Me The Body. Photo by @muhstee
You could feel empowered by the energy emanating from the stage during the performance and everyone was there to appreciate the music while the memories and nostalgic emotions drummed up one note at a time. Without a doubt, the punk spirit dominated the evening.
The Corpus family came together on stage, with some of the members finally letting their guard down after a long day of responsibilities and planning by jumping into the crowd and becoming one with them.
Show Me The Body. Photo by @muhstee
As an Afroitalian, it feels so good to be able to revisit my adolescence in some type of way. Don't get me wrong, my passion and dedication to punk and hardcore music never left me throughout the years. Still, it is something else that had gone away for a very long time, and that is the hope of being able to find a true sense of belonging in this scene, to not feel alone, not being stared at for being who I am and so forth…
But this is not about me, it is solely about the community that embraced me with open arms from the very beginning.
Life is hard enough on its own, and we're not meant to go about it alone.
I will never forget those fantastic 8 hours; if I do, it simply means that CORPUS put together another amazing music festival that overshadows this one. I believe they will, I think this is the beginning of something that will go down in history, and I'm genuinely looking forward to being part of it.
Community unites us.
"A sense of community can be nurtured by taking small steps, like starting a conversation with your neighbor, checking in on a new co-worker, or stopping to say "hi" to a custodian. Building a sense of community starts with small, intentional acts of kindness and acknowledgment." Words by Sarah Von H