Ceremony @ 1100 (Mess With Texas) 3/17/12: With their excellent new album Zoo, the popular critical line on California’s Ceremony is that they’ve given up on being a hardcore band, turning into a straight-up rock crew instead. But live, they remain very much a hardcore crew, with erratic, tatted-up frontman Ross Farrar charging into the pit, passing the mic around, and climbing speaker stacks when necessary. He’s a blast to watch, but even without his antics, the scrappy band would still come off punk as fuck; their turbocharged vroom is the sort of thing that evokes VFW Hall matinee memories in anyone predisposed to that sort of thing. I loved them, obviously. -Tom
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