Crossroads is hardcore with heart

Aaron Cortinas • Staff Writer

Crossroads Music Venue is a warehouse on a backroad off of Loop 323. Its environment is grunge. But it hosts a variety of musical artists from Rapper Riff Raff, to pop band Metro Station, to a line-up of metal bands on March 8. The metal bands included: Hollowed Out, Two Ton, Spiral Eye and Cremated Remains.

Pulling into the gravel parking lot, muffled music is heard, indicating that it’s much louder inside. People chatting and smoking cigarettes outside greet those entering the building. Inside is dark, and music blares from the speakers onstage. A small group of people are headbanging and moshing close to the stage. Others are standing farther back, nodding along and mouthing lyrics. Their attention is so focused, it’s as if they were in a trance-like state.

Metal fan, Rai Baughman, drove from Longview to see Crossroads’ metal show. Baughman says they appreciate the friendliness of Crossroads’ metal scene.

“Even with heavy shows … people get knocked down … [and others] immediately get you back up, … making sure you’re OK,” Baughman says. “It’s a good place to be.”

Baughman admits that Crossroads’ grunge environment can put some people off. However, they say that

Crossroads shouldn’t be ignored because of it.

“It’s not some bougie, expensive venue, Baughman says. “It’s a small venue in a warehouse, but they have amazing shows, huge headliners … It’s like if your friend had a big garage … Everyone here is so loving.”

Tyler musician and Crossroads volunteer, Mike Knight, has attended shows at Crossroads for six years now. His pop-punk band, Semi-Finals, played at Crossroads on March 10. Knight says he likes Crossroads’ variety of bands.

“I used to come … before I was even in a band that played at Crossroads because they were always booking cool shows,” Knight says.

He says that Crossroads makes an effort to be part of Tyler’s music community by providing artists with chances to perform on the same stage as bigger bands.

“[Crossroads] gives [opportunities] to artists who wouldn’t get a chance,” Knight says. “They give the opportunity to like any band.” As an audience member, Knight says that Crossroads makes bands sound good. “[Crossroads] invested a lot into making a good sound system, it’s not just two speakers and a PA.”

Crossroads Music Venue frequently hosts big-name bands. The next big concert is on April 22 at 6:30 p.m. It will feature the bands Alesana and Red Jumpsuit Apparatus.

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