Rebelmatic- DCxPC Live Vol. 18 Rebelmatic Live at Fuzz Fest WV

by | Mar 15, 2024 | Reviews

Rebelmatic DCxPC Live Vol. 18 Rebelmatic Live at Fuzz Fest WV


Live albums are not as ubiquitous as they once were in decades past, but a great one can still be iconic and essential. A great live album not only catches a band’s energy and personality, but also crowd’s energy and interactions. DCPC, a label run by Scott Pasch, specializes in live vinyl, an idea that spawned from the proliferation of livestreams during the pandemic and has since carved out a very distinct niche in punk and hardcore.


For volume 18 of its live series, DCPC , along with Shiny Dome Records, captured a set from New York hardcore giants, Rebelmatic, during Fuzz Fest WV in Morgantown, West Virginia. Rebelmatic are an absolute force live, with kickass hardcore anthems, relentless energy, and superb musicanship. All of that comes through loud and clear on DCxPC Live Vol. 18 Rebelmatic Live at Fuzz Fest WV.


“Pony” kicks off the record in a fury, the band immediately on fire. Alkatraz’s near-metal guitar intro gives way to straight-ahead punk rock delivered the Rebelmatic way. Ramsey Jones is a flawless drummer, his snare rolls and tom-tom patterns sounding studio-perfect. Karnage adds depth and musicality on bass, especially underneath Alkatraz’s solos. And, of course, there’s Creature, aka Creech, his New York-accented growl sounding so fierce, delivering powerful vocals and inciting the crowd to match the band’s energy.


Rebelmatic performing

Rebelmatic live in Brooklyn (photo by Kate Hoos)


The chants of “Re-bel-ma-tic!” start immediately. Creech, from the stage, sees all—who’s dancing and thrashing and who’s maybe slow to respond. Some of the most entertaining and endearing parts of the record is hearing him try to get every single person in the audience involved, calling in the passive folks more than calling them out.


“You right here, my friend,” he says to someone in the audience, breathless after a particularly searing “Insult to Injury,” “you are not participating. We need everyone to participate to make this more of a celebration.”


From there, the band launches into “Blood and Gold.” Alkatraz’s descending “Rise Above”-style guitar intro is joined by an absolutely blistering snare roll from Jones. From there, it’s pure punk rock celebration, as intended. Creech bellows the singalong chorus hook, with Alkatraz and Karnage barking “Blood and gold!” behind him. 


Rebelmatic performing

Rebelmatic live in Brooklyn (photo by Kate Hoos)


“Show N Prove” is a powerful NYHC stomper, and the West Virginia kids no doubt moshed their way into oblivion. Creech’s vocals are particularly intense during this tune, as he seems to reach for something extra. “Hey yo, don’t die asleep/hey, yo, don’t die a sheep” is a classic hardcore hook.


There’s another great interlude afterward, Creech encouraging the crowd to get to know each other. “If you don’t know each other, introduce yourself. I don’t care about all the social shit, say ‘Hello, my name is blah, blah, blah.’”


Shows, especially punk and hardcore shows, can sometimes be a little edgy and maybe off-putting for some. He’s quick to make sure everyone knows it’s an inclusive space.


“We’re at a social gathering. I want people to feel comfortable, I want people to have fun. Is that OK?” The crowd assures him it is so. 


The positivity remains present during a tight-as-fuck “Born to Win,” a pogo-worthy rager. Creech seems to invoke a bit of Jello Biafra in his vocals during the chorus, “Oh baby, you/you’re born to win!” Jones is phenomenal here, his perfectly tuned snare cracking with such life, I can’t imagine anyone was left standing with their arms folded.


Rebelmatic performing

Rebelmatic live in Brooklyn (photo by Kate Hoos)


It’s a near-impossible task for a live album to match the intensity and magic of actually being at the show. But, hell, if this record doesn’t come damn close. The recording itself is pristine, serving as a no-frills, accurate depiction of Rebelmatic as an exceptional live band. They don’t need any trickery. Set up good mics and let them do their thing—which is what we get with DCPC  Live Vol. 18. It’s as close to being there as you can get without sharing sweat with someone you just met.


DCxPC Live Vol. 18 Rebelmatic Live at Fuzz Fest WV is available now via Bandcamp.




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