Words by Kevin Silva
Walking onto the convention floor of ComplexCon, around the corner as you pass the giant LEGO Adidas display and the Felt merch area, you find Turnstile’s booth dressed up in the soft pink and white that adorns their album cover for their latest Glow On while offering airbrushed shirts for the event.
Walk a little further out past the Hello Kitty carnival into the hall next door and there you find a winding line awaiting the opening of the Long Beach Arena where the crown holders of Maryland hardcore would soon play.
The arena opens, the fans fill in the room, and Turnstile takes the stage in front of giant LED screen baring their name as they head into their opener “MYSTERY”.
As it continues to be the case, as they’re on their current run with hip-hop act $uicideboy$, this doesn’t seem to be the crowd you’d normally expect to be at a Turnstile show as they were opening for A$AP Rocky performing a 10-year anniversary celebration of his mixtape LIVE.LOVE.A$AP.
Alas, when you put Turnstile on a show, they’re going to win over and make a lot of new fans with their energy and raw emotion that rips through each set.
The streetwear and convention set continued with “Real Thing” and “Big Smile” off of 2018’s Time & Space as well as new heaters like “BLACKOUT” and the ever so smooth “UNDERWATER BOI”
When that cowbell drum beat by Daniel Fang in “HOLIDAY”, you saw the attention of the crowd shift and those still unsure were not forever changed and were vibing with Turnstile’s unique brand of hardcore.
Vocalist Brendan Yates and the crew finished their set with the song that seems to be the mantra of the band with some “TLC (TURNSTILE LOVE CONNECTION)”.
Turnstile made the most of their 25-minute set and received chants from old and new fans alike for “one more song” even as Yates quickly ran up to his bandmate’s pedal boards and started disconnecting cords.
The best way to describe the experience of Turnstile is summed up with how I felt the first time I saw them. I heard their music and I liked it, but then I finally saw them, and I got it.