Metalcore band ISSUES came to NYC’s Playstation Theater on Monday night in support of their second studio album Headspace for what would be a 21-song performance full of moshpits, crowdsurfing and me getting kicked in the head in the photo pit. Admittedly, this has never really been my scene, and I had probably underestimated the crowd for this one and in hindsight should have anticipated the high volume of surfers and prepared accordingly, but I digress. What has always been my scene, however, is good music in any form, no matter how crazy it might be.
ISSUES is still a relatively new band and with only two full-length albums and a pair of EPs, their repertoire is obviously limited, yet they manage to put together unusually long sets. Even for bands that have a dozen studio albums, 21 songs is a lot and more than most acts play on any given night. For ISSUES to be able to cook up that kind of setlist on only two albums speaks to how well written their music is. 10 of those 21 songs, however, did come from the Headspace album’s 13 tracks, so finding 11 more is that far of a stretch when you also consider that the band would go on to play 7 of the tunes from their self-titled debut.
Some of the night’s highlights include COMA, King of Amarillo, The Worst of Them, Hero, I Always Knew and Slow Me Down. Of course, the show would not be complete without Mad at Myself and Hooligans, perhaps the band’s most popular song. Both would be featured in the encore with Hooligans closing the show and capping off a night of metalcore, crowd surfing, circle pits and an audience that looked more like a MASH unit than attendees of a concert by the time it was over. Indeed, counting myself as a casualty (I think being kicked in the head while working allows me to do that), the walking wounded piled up halfway through the set, but that’s how you know people are having a good time. As the saying goes, it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt – and then it’s awesome.
ISSUES are definitely going places in the metalcore scene. How many of their fans will survive their shows to go places with them is yet to be seen, but the band is certainly on their way if this one was any indication. I, for one, will wear a helmet next time.. Check out the photo gallery below.