For hardcore music fans, 2017 was a milestone in the history of Glastonbury, as the festival embraced grindcore, anarcho-punk and heavy metal with a dedicated line-up in the legendary nightspot of Shangri-La.
Curated by Nottingham's Earache Records, a brand new stage was unveiled for the occasion: the Earache Express. A fitting title for a venue made from an old London tube carriage (the Victoria line, to be precise), into which bands and fans both squeezed, engulfed by headsplitting volumes and thrilling chaos. Destination: hardcore. Please mind the gap.
Grindcore veterans Napalm Death kicked things off on Shangri-La's larger Truth Stage, presiding over a swirling moshpit as they tore through an extensive back catalogue. In the breathing space between tracks, frontman Barney Greenway - renowned for his "death growl" vocal style - wryly reassured the audience: "If you're not following, lyric sheets can be obtained".
Singapore's Wormrot were the first band from the country to perform at Glastonbury, packing out the Earache Express and doubtless making new fans in the process. A chaotic barrage of growls and pummelling drums on the surface, but underpinned by a metronomically precise musicianship that's required to perform at breakneck speed (and in a space the size of a tube carriage).
Nottingham's HECK, who describe themselves as "a rock and roll band with no computers", bounced off the walls of the Earache Express during a ferocious - and borderline acrobatic - set. At one point they accomplished the unlikely feat of performing to three separate crowds at once: inside the carriage, down in the bar and outside in the queue...
A hop back to the outdoor Truth Stage for one of the original hardcore punk bands - San Francisco's Dead Kennedys. Still brimming with energy and a provocative sense of humour, singer Skip Greer railed against the music industry, the internet and American politics between leaping into the crowd to share the mic.
Steve Ignorant's Slice of Life
Co-founder of seminal anarcho-punk collective Crass, Steve Ignorant squeezed his backing band into the Earache Express to pelt out political songs like the chant-along Do They Owe Us A Living, pausing for breath to share his feelings on subjects from animal cruelty to equality.