Entombed Festival 2023 – Day One

It feels really good being back in Hastings for the Entombed Festival at The Crypt venue, where punk and metal live in perfect harmony… or noise, depending on who you ask. I went there last year and to my surprise, I absolutely loved it. Great bands, great atmosphere and easily commutable from good ol’ Brighton & Hove by the sea. With this new edition, the organisers upped the ante and yours truly (along with my friend and fellow lens queen Gemma Shaw of Gloomy Lights Photography) is here to tell you everything you’ve missed and everything you’ll have to expect if you decide to go in the future.

Entombed Festival 2023

Day One started with the Brighton chaps from No Relief, your typical skater hardcore punk band and… erm, I wasn’t impressed. I mean, the drummer was good, the bass was good, the guitars were good, but the vocalist just did not do it for me. He reminded me way too much of those fail compilations on Catatonic Youths to be into it. That and the overdoing of ninja windmills. I would admit that the intent was there, but the execution left me cold. Sorry, but it was a pass for me.

No Relief @ Entombed Festival 2023 – Photo by Nessie Spencer
No Relief – Photo by Nessie Spencer

However, the next band of the night, Beige, also hailing from Brighton, absolutely BLEW ME away. You could tell from their set where the inspiration was as it reminded me a lot of the grunge bands we all love to listen like Tigercub, Alice In Chains, early Stone Temple Pilots and a sprinkle of Soundgarden (especially in terms of the rhythm section) but also had a Sabbathy vibe to it which was more reminiscent of Elephant Tree and Queens of The Stone Age. But what really did for me was the vocalist, Leanna and her impressively sultry and raw vocals. The set was short but, oh so sweet, they won me over that night, as were many of us in attendance. Definitely a band I will follow in the future and that we will hear more of soon. Desertfest London 2024, maybe? One can only dream…

Beige @ Entombed Festival 2023 – Photo by Nessie Spencer
Beige – Photo by Nessie Spencer

The Cornish lads from Helpless may look pasty, but they are nothing but tasty. See what I did there. The grind/hardcore trio were probably the band I was really looking forward to seeing the most, and they did not disappoint. They were absolutely incredible, going thrash one minute then really hardcore the next. And they still have time to interact with the audience and banter. The Crypt seemed to enjoy their brutal set as much as I did, but then again, I’m biased because I’ve seen them a few times. Also, if I did’t mention how fabulous these guys were, I may get sued, and I’m a woman of words. Listen to Helpless if you haven’t done it already, and go see them at ArcTanGent this Summer if you plan to attend. You won’t regret it!

Helpless @ Entombed Festival 2023 – Photo by Gemma Shaw
Helpless – Photo by Gemma Shaw

Next up were Copenhagen-based Telos with some loud and chaotic blackened hardcore, and they were pretty fun to watch. Did it chug? Oh yes, it did. Very chuggy, maybe a tad too chuggy, but still good in my books. I can see why these guys are being hyped by all the other bands of the night, because they were very professional and knew exactly how to do the job well. However, you could tell they were rushing things as they started a good twenty-five minutes late. They still got my attention and I thought they were great. I would still add a little caveat and say that they would probably be and sound better in a more convenient setting, though. Still a band to watch out for if I were you.

Telos @ Entombed Festival 2023 – Photo by Gemma Shaw
Telos – Photo by Gemma Shaw

And finally, the main event for Day One, the legendary Knuckledust. I am convinced that adding such a staple of British hardcore music into your festival must be a bonus for the present and potential future attendees, it certainly was. The set was full of energy and windmills started to go on as soon as they started, which made it near impossible to shoot from the front rows.

Knuckledust @ Entombed Festival 2023 – Photo by Gemma Shaw
Knuckledust – Photo by Gemma Shaw

But goddammit, these guys are legends for a very good reason. I’m sure that the whole town of Hastings were able to hear them. It was *that* rowdy. Also, massive kudos to bands like Knuckledust who were not afraid of holding the mic to the audience, so they can sing and scream with them, you can tell they love that close proximity with their fans. Unfortunately, halfway through the set, I had to leave The Crypt for the joys of Southern Rail.

Day One of Entombed Festival was fantastic, it was so much fun. Day Two was as fun and promising but that’s another report that you will have to read. Signing off for now, Nessie Spencer, TSS News.

Entombed Festival 2023 Day One Gallery

Scribed by: Nessie Spencer
Photos by: Nessie Spencer & Gemma Shaw