Borne out of the American punk scene of the late 1970s, hardcore music raged through the '80s, spreading to towns and cities across the globe. "Balance" focuses on the current European scene, documenting the lives of musicians who strike a balance between their day jobs and this vital musical force. From tattooists in Portugal to miners in Poland, "Balance" uncovers the twin lives of those working to support their passion. Hardcore has always been more than just music and although the performers and fans across the continent speak different languages and live in different places, they are tied to each other through a culture that transcends borders. Capturing the chaos of the mosh pit, the monotony of the office, and the sheer energy of this music, "Balance" pays homage to the bands, promoters, designers, and supporters who have made the decision to a live a hardcore life.
As Ian Glasper writes in the book's foreword, "This music resides in our hearts and minds and colors everything we do, everything we touch, everything we are. Even if you've moved on musically, hardcore punk informs the decisions you make for the rest of your life . . . And that's because at the end of the day, as great as the music is, it's about the relationships you forge with those around you.
About the Author
Tom Barry is Director of the Peace and Security Program at the Institute for Policy Studies.