• Review

Show Review: Knocked Loose Tears It Up at MegaCorp

Photo Cred: Ezra Plymesser

Only 3 albums deep, Knocked Loose have ascended to a place in the metal adjacent hardcore slamdance-o-sphere that is as equally impressive as it was inevitable. The band has been growing in both confidence and influence over the course of each release cycle, and with their latest release - May 2024’s actual heavy music masterpiece, You Won’t Go Before You’re Supposed To - Knocked Loose have reached what I’m hoping isn’t a pinnacle or plateau, but a stepping stone to something important for the scene: the next generation of leaders and mentors. I actually think this tour makes a great case for why that’s already happening.

Last night at MegaCorp, even with the relatively mild temps outside, was sticky and warm. If it wasn’t a sold out show, it was basically a sold out show. The floor was packed, the balconies 3-4 folks back from the railing, the mood tense but excited. You could see glimpses of what turned out to be one of the best stage decorations I’ve seen in a long time behind the black curtain that was the backdrop for all 3 supporting acts. This was a crowd primed and ready for something that felt simultaneously celebratory and cathartic - though it was impossible to discern if that was the crowd, the atmosphere, or the energy the bands would ultimately bring to the stage.

Speed, a hardcore band from Australia, started out the night. While their logo was so inscrutable I actually missed its inclusion on the show poster, they ended up being a lot of fun and a great band to kick things off. I can’t imagine being from that far away and playing to crowds like these - especially as it was their first time in the US. I was fortunate enough to catch Scottish heavy music purveyors Bleed From Within in a similar situation, which was as fascinating as it was rejuvenating. It’s easy to think of hardcore and its surrounding sub-genres as a strictly American endeavor, but Speed brought the jams and got the crowd moving, windmilling, spin-kicking, ground-pounding and all.


Keeping with the precedent set by the show opener, UK act Loathe changed things up a bit with their own take on melodic post-hardcore, moving through a Deftones meets Sleep Token Invent.Animate-esque set that was both lovely and punishingly heavy. Some interesting technical difficulties aside, their set was fun to watch, with much of the crowd engaged and ready to dance along between rhythmic head and hand bobbing. I’m looking forward to listening to more of their oeuvre over the next couple weeks - I have a feeling I’m going to enjoy the hell out of it.


Direct support rested on the shoulders of one of the bolder choices I’ve maybe ever seen for a tour of this size. With darkness enveloping MegaCorp for the significant chunk of their first song, mumble-shouted lyrics and moody synth setting the tone, and a sort of intensity from the offset that was as intriguing as it was confusing, Show Me The Body proceeded to get folks riled up, piss them off, challenge them, and for some of the more intrepid showgoers, get them dancing - all in a set of about 45 bonkers minutes. Drums, bass, synth, hip-hop style vocals (more Death Grips than Childish Gambino, mind you), along with a rhythm and cadence reminiscent of Rage Against the Machine, Show Me The Body also employed the heaviest, weirdest, somehow most contextually appropriate use of a banjo I’ve ever witnessed. The end result was a set that one, I have to give Knocked Loose some serious credit for choosing for their album release headliner, and two, have to respect that Show Me The Body absolutely did not give any kind of shit what the crowd was feeling or not. Yes, they were confrontational, yes, their vocalist made more than a few “crying baby” motions to the crowd, but no, they didn’t care and yes, they absolutely crushed. Is it something I can listen to on a regular basis? No idea. Can I recommend others check it out? Probably not. Did it turn out to be a band that some of the folks I most respect in and out of the music circles I float around in already knew about and enjoy? Absolutely. Regardless, it was wild.


Finally - and I admit that even with four bands on the bill, this one moved at a decent clip and stage turnover was relatively quick - it was Knocked Loose’s time in the dingy, foggy, hidden behind a giant semi-translucent curtain spotlight.

And holy shit, y’all. This is a band at the top of their game. Regardless of where you stand concerning the bands overall talent, or your personal thoughts on the vocal stylings of their front person, I think it would be impossible to deny that Knocked Loose knows exactly who they are, what they’re about, and how to put on a damn good show. Equal parts Every Time I Die, Bane, [insert death/black metal band of choice], and yet very much their own thing, Knocked Loose commanded attention and respect from the first hit on the floor tom.

A thin, LED cross glowed through the screen covering the entirety of the stage. Giant, bright lights pulsed on beat with the kick and tom. Fog had started filling the stage as soon as Show Me The Body stalked off. Moody, vibe-y, thematically and visually on point relative to their new album, even discounting the music, the theatrics and thought behind the stage setup was immersive and worth seeing on its own. When the curtain dropped - literally - the band appeared through the fog and absolutely owned the stage, the crowd, and the venue. Heavy, energetic, uniformly clothed in black, backlit and framed perfectly by giant, moss-covered trees and brilliantly programed screens that moved through church window, flame, all-seeing eye, and other moderately creepy imagery, even as a relatively new fan of the band, I was genuinely impressed by what unfolded over the next hour or so.


It turns out I knew quite a few folks in attendance, though I skirted the crowd and never ventured into the more packed and periodically violent portions of the floor. Every one of them left the show just as impressed as I did, and considering the overall pedigree and listening habits of those who shared their experience with me on a random Facebook post I made, I think that’s telling, and leads me back to my initial point at the start of this review.

Knocked Loose are here, and I think they’re ready to lead the way for heavy music - bands and fans - for some time to come. Last night, the tour itself, their new album, all of it feels like a big step up for them, and even though it’s not from the start, I am stoked I got to bear witness to what they’re doing now.

Knocked Loose

Open Album