It’s Friday the 13th and some say it’s an unlucky day for some, or if you’re a Knights Templar. But for us at the Boston Music Room in Tufnell Park, it’s not as we are about to see members of the hardest hitting bands of the 90s, Cypress Hill, Downset, Biohazard and Fear Factory who go by the name of Powerflo.
Billy Graziadei (Biohazard), Sen Dog (Cypress Hill), Roy Lozano (Downset) and Christian Olde Wolbers (Fear Factory) with Fred Rio on drums.
On the sound system N.W.A’s ‘Straight Outta Compton’ makes the heads bob to a beat, it ends, it goes dark and Powerflo enter the stage and power straight into ‘Resistance’ the room bounces as hardcore followers do, Send Dog spits lyrics while Billy, Christian, Roy and Fred go explosive style in this hot dark room.
Off their debut record ‘My M.O’ and ‘Finish the Game’ thrash those speakers tinnitus style. Sen Dog tells the plethora of hardcore fans they need to go crazy, which they do. Followers stand, jump mosh all in Biohazard shirts, NIN hoodies and Fear Factory beanies, they bounce and mosh all to clear their working souls away this evening.
Crunching guitar riffs by Billy who’s owning his side of the stage, Christian Olde Wolbers and Roy Lozano taking over the heat wave with ferocity. Seeing Billy Graziadai live once again gravitates me to the days Biohazard’s music helped create a community of Down for Life.
It’s heavy music to headbang until our heart is content. Male and female cause havoc in the middle of the floor, people climb the stage, sing with Sen Dog and crowd surf to these hard-hitting cats. It gets serious as Cypress Hill’s Sen Dog introduces his brethren to us all, firstly, our man from Biohazard, Billy Graziadei with a short hard heavy guitar eruption of Biohazard, then Christian Olde Wolbers who put the fear in Fear Factory, Roy Lozano’s heavy burst of Downset’s Empowered, leading to Send Dog’s A to the K jam get the crowd feverishly wanting more.
Powerflo shows how powerful their original incarnations music is/was with the hardcore heavy line of Roy Lazano chords, Sen Dog spits lyrics in ‘Want It This Way’. The crowd go more old school as we hear a Biohazard ‘Joint’, “How It Is” the passion flies around the venue as the pit goes old school, others climb and jump from the stage. Another joins Billy on How it is, while Christian takes the power vocals, all of us shouting “that’s how it is Y’all that’s how it is”.
If I wasn’t so emotionally stunted, a tear could easily have slipped down this cheek of mine, but no one would’ve noticed due to the heat inside.
The set ends with ‘The Grind’, and my highlight of their debut record, ‘Victim of Circumstances a great sound of hardcore and rap together works and takes nothing away from the feel of the hardcore sound as Fred Rios continually keeps up with the hardcore movement.
We go home as if we’ve eaten a meal of a lifetime, or head to the back of the hall to meet Powerfo, who hang about shaking hands, getting photos with us all… not me sadly, I didn’t take the opportunity, due to my own politeness of allowing others to go in front of me. Bad move Mark, bad move. Next time I’ll be less polite and meet those hardcore legends.