Tuesday, May 30, 2006
I am sad to say that I missed the final Champion show. When I first heard that they were breaking up, I had every intention of getting to Seattle in any way possible. Like alot of plans I make, that one did not pan out. The pressures of finals as well as working a go-nowhere job where I get paid next to nothing are the culprits here. Earlier today, the good folks at Bridge Nine Records put up some leftover merch for purchase, including the poster pictured above and a final show pressing of their excellent Promises Kept LP, both of which I picked up. After I placed my order, I put on PK and listened to it a couple of times through.
After letting it soak in for a few minutes, I realized that while I didn't see the band's last show and missed out on what would have likely been an incredible trip, I was still one lucky hardcore kid. I got to set up three shows for them at Cave Nine, and attend one show in Nashville the night after the first time they played Birmingham. The shows were great experiences, enhanced only by meeting and getting to know the members of Champion. In a conversation with Aram after one Cave Nine show (I can't remember which), I remember telling him how glad I was that there were at least a handful of truly (remove all cliches from the following words) sincere and positive Straight Edge bands currently playing and touring. He just smiled and said "I promise you that we will always be a positive Straight Edge band." He wasn't lying. They didn't break up because someone sold out. They didn't break up because they were tired of hardcore or burnt out on playing. They did the respectable thing and ended it before it stopped being relevant and fun, two things that Hardcore should always be. Even though they will likely never read this, I wish them all the best in their future endeavors, in and outside of music. They were one of the few bands that lived by the words they wrote and sang and the ethics of the scene they were involved with, and they will be missed dearly.