Jesus Piece

Jesus Piece • April 30, 2024 • Soundwell

Reviewed and Photographed by Thea Chevelle

For those who might not know, Jesus Piece is a metalcore band from Philadelphia consisting of Aaron Heard on vocals, guitarists David Updike and John DiStefano, bassist Anthony Marinarod, and Luis Aponte on the drums. I got the privilege of seeing them at Soundwell on their co-headlining tour with Sanguisugabogg. The dates kicked off in April, the two bands were joined by Peeling Flesh and Gag. 

This was my second time having the pleasure of seeing and shooting Jesus Piece. Our first encounter was at Tough Luvv festival in Mesa, AZ back in March; I got to see them perform with bands like Scalp, Three 6 Mafia & City Morgue. As soon as I saw they were coming through SLC, I knew I had to be there! 

The lineup was perfectly curated which was proved by the fact that the energy level inside of the nearly full Soundwell was maintained at insanely high levels all night!  Openers Peeling Flesh and Gag set the stage on fire with their own unique brands of hardcore intensity. 

First up was Peeling Flesh, whose ferocious set served as the perfect primer for the night. Bursting onto the stage with powerful energy, they wasted no time getting the pit going. Their relentless assault of thrashing guitars and guttural vocals ignited a spark within the audience, drawing them into the fray with infectious enthusiasm. 

Next, Gag took the baton and ran with it. Their blend of aggressive riffs and impassioned vocals struck a chord with the crowd, inciting a frenzy of movement and emotion. Unfortunately, because of all that emotion, their set got cut short. 

Sanguisugabogg’s performance, to no surprise, was an electrifying whirlwind of sonic chaos and untamed energy. From the moment they stepped onto the stage, the crowd was ensnared. 

Frontman Devin Swank’s vocals ripped through the venue like a chainsaw through flesh, each riff and blast beat driving the audience into a frenzy of frenetic movement. The relentless assault of sound was only matched by the sheer intensity of the crowd’s response, a cacophony of screams and chants that reverberated through the venue. 

Thank you to the guy at Jesus Piece merch booth for keeping an eye on my camera so I could be in the pit for this set! 

Now for my favorite part of the night: 

As Jesus Piece tore into their setlist, the crowd instantly erupted into a frenzy of stage diving and moshing. Bodies collided in a chaotic dance of aggression and release, fueled by the relentless pulse of the music. Stage divers soared through the air, propelled by the sheer force of their adrenaline-fueled enthusiasm.

Meanwhile, the moshpit was a maelstrom of bodies, swirling and thrashing to the relentless beat of the drums. Every shove,every stomp, every primal scream was a testament to the cathartic power of hardcore music, a release valve for the pent-up frustrations of daily life. 

Amidst the chaos, there was a sense of control, it was a calculated chaos that spoke volumes about the band’s mastery of their craft and frontman Aaron Heards proven ability to lead. He prowled the stage like a caged beast, his vocals ranging from guttural roars to anguished screams, each word dripping with raw emotion. The rest of the band was equally as powerful, their energy infectious as they tore through songs like “Fear of Failure” and “Silver Lining”. 

In a world where heavy music often finds itself wandering through predictable territories, Jesus Piece emerges as a furious force that is relentless and unapologetic in their artistry and it is so refreshing! 

Between songs, Heard spoke passionately about topics ranging from social injustice to personal struggles, creating a sense of solidarity that resonated throughout the venue. The band had a flag hung on the stage that read “From the river to the sea” in support of Palestine. In those close moments, the music became more than just music; it became a rallying cry for change, a call to arms for those who refuse to be silent in the face of adversity! 

There was an undeniable sense of catharsis to Jesus Piece’s performance. As the final notes echoed through the venue, there was a collective sense of release, as if the weight of the world had been lifted, if only for a moment. 

After the show as everyone was heading back to reality, one lucky fan left with Heards lighter …and a dislocated shoulder from stage diving but he didn’t seem to care too much about the injury after talking with Heard and getting his token of appreciation!

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