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 the drummer for London hardcore band Kartel and has been a fixture of the city's hardcore music scene since the mid 1990s. He began covering alternative and underground music as a staff writer with Big Cheese magazine before moving into youth work and continuing to contribute to community-focused publications. His writing has covered a variety of subjects—from interviews with Slayer to the content of local school meals. He looks forward to playing and attending as many hardcore shows as possible before he dies.
Sophia Schorr-Kon is a freelance photographer who took up photography at the London College of Communication. She has covered a large range of UK music festivals such as Glastonbury and Bestival. She has also worked with many up and coming bands and established musicians shooting for labels such as Sony. Schorr-Kon also works within the political sphere and regularly contributes to the New Statesman.