Tag: DevilDriver

GWAR Announces Fall 2012 North American Trek

GWAR Announces Fall 2012 North American Trek

GWAR has just announced dates for their fall trek across the mighty continent of North America. Taking a break from recording their next studio record, GWAR will be joined by DevilDriver, Cancer Bats and Legacy of Disorder on this particular trek.

When asked for comment on the upcoming tour, GWAR front-thing Oderus Urungus muttered something incoherent, then when prodded a bit more muttered something else incoherent.  After the third attempt for comment something more intelligible came from the mouth of the warty one:

Said Lord Oderus, “Once again GWAR returns, hoof and nail, to our old stomping grounds, North America, on a tour of utter destruction, and this time nothing less than the greatest power in the universe will do as our primary victim! That’s right, this time GWAR, fresh from our battle with Death, takes on another of history’s biggest assholes…God himself! Seeing as we don’t have the new album done yet, we really had to do something spectacular…”

Oderus belched out a midget and continued. “This tour will also see the arrival of a new Scumdog brother to aid GWAR in our quest to destroy everything that sucks. That’s right, I can finally reveal certain details regarding our new album…ever since our missing band mate Flattus Maximus took his leave of Earth, members of the Maximus tribe have been showing up at our Antarctic fortress, not only to pay their respects but also eat all of our food. And also lay tracks on the new album! You see, every member of the Maximus family rips on guitar (though Flattus taught them all they know), and they were anxious to help us fill the void left by Flattus. We have been working with his brothers Pustulus, Infecticus, Bubonus and even the shunned Corpulus…and right now they are fighting it out as to which one of them will stay here with the mighty GWAR for the “FATE OR CHAOS” Tour…and beyond! Get ready world, this fall shall see the birth of a new Scumdog!”

Dates for the trek are down below. As we previously reported, GWAR will host their annual GWAR-B-Q this August in Richmond, VA. For more details on that throwdown, click here. Finally, for some great love advice from GWAR, click here.

GWAR Fall 2012 North American Tour:

10/12: Philadelphia, PA @ Electric Factory
10/14: Clifton Park, NY @ Northern Lights
10/15: New Haven, CT @ Toad’s Place
10/16: Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
10/18: Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade
10/19: Ybor City, FL @ The Ritz Ybor
10/20: Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ Revolution
10/22: Charlotte, NC @ Amos’ Southend
10/24: New Orleans, LA @ House of Blues
10/25: Austin, TX @ Emo’s
10/26: Dallas, TX @ House of Blues
10/27: Houston, TX @ House of Blues
10/31: Denver, CO @ Summit Music Hall
11/1: Albuquerque, NM @ Sunshine Theater
11/2: Tempe, AZ @ The Marquee
11/3: Santa Ana, CA @ The Observatory
11/4: West Hollywood, CA @ House of Blues
11/5: Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst
11/6: Sacramento, CA @ Ace of Spades
11/8: Boise, ID @ Knitting Factory
11/9: Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater
11/10: Seattle, WA @ Showbox at the Market
11/11: Spokane, WA @ Knitting Factory
11/12: Vancouver, BC @ Vogue Theater
11/14: Edmonton, AB @ Edmonton Events Centre
11/15: Calgary, AB @ MacEwan Hall Ballroom
11/16: Saskatoon, SK @ Odeon Events Centre
11/17: Winnipeg, MB @ The Garrick Center
11/18: Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue
11/20: Grand Rapids, MI @ The Intersection
11/21: Milwaukee, WI @ The Rave
11/23: Detroit, MI @ Harpo’s
11/24: Toronto, ON @ Sound Academy
11/26: Millvale, PA @ Mr. Smalls Theater

The 2012 Metal Alliance Tour

The 2012 Metal Alliance Tour

The dates for the 2012 Metal Alliance Tour have been unleashed. Headlined by Devildriver, the trek will kick off at SXSW on March 15th and end in Houston on April 21st. Also confirmed for the bill are The Faceless, Job For A Cowboy, Dying Fetus, 3 Inches of Blood, Impending Doom and Wretched. Check out the dates for the tour below.

 

METAL ALLIANCE TOUR

3/15 Austin, TX @ SXSW / Scoot Inn
3/16 New Orleans, LA @ The Hangar
3/17 St Petersburg, FL @ State Theater
3/18 Charlotte, NC @ Amos’ Southend
3/20 Baltimore, MD @ Sonar
3/21 New York, NY @ Gramercy Theater
3/22 Danvers, MA @ Palace Ballroom
3/23 Montreal, QC @ Le National
3/24 Toronto, ON @ Opera House
3/25 Columbus, OH @ Alrosa Villa
3/26 Joliet, IL @ Mojoe’s
3/27 St Paul, MN @ Station-4
3/28 Winnipeg, MB @ Garrick Centre
3/29 Regina, SK @ Riddell Centre
3/30 Edmonton, AB @ Edmonton Events Centre
3/31 Vancouver, BC @ Rickshaw Theater
4/01 Seattle, WA @ Studio Seven
4/02 Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theater
4/05 Oakland, CA @ The Pound
4/06 West Hollywood, CA @ House of Blues
4/07 Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theater
4/09 Denver, CO @ The Summit Music Hall
4/10 Omaha, NE @ Sokol Auditorium
4/11 Des Moines, IA @ 7 Flags Event Center
4/13 Memphis, TN @ New Daisy Theater
4/15 Lawrence, KS @ Granada Theater
4/16 Tulsa, OK @ Cain’s Ballroom
4/19 Dallas, TX @ House Of Blues
4/20 Austin, TX @ Emo’s East
4/21 Houston, TX @ House Of Blues

 

UPDATED: It’s Official: OZZFEST Is Now A Total Joke With UK Show Announcement

As if the 2010 US version of Ozzfest (featuring a fat and bloated Motley Crue, as well as unoriginal artists such as Devildriver and Drowning Pool) was not a slap in the face of heavy metal fans – the once great metal singer has decided to torture metal fans across the pond.  That’s right everyone – for one night only the heavy metal puppet is going to have an Ozzfest at the O2 Arena in London, England. 

Perhaps things are different in the UK, but the last time I checked, half that lineup couldn’t sell out most local bars – let alone an arena.  Likewise, does anyone care about Korn at all these days? 

Then again, with pit tickets still available (as of publishing) for the US Tour kick off on August 14th at the massive Glen Helen Corporate Sponsered Pavilion here in Southern California, one must wonder if Ozzfest should have stayed on hiatus?

With all due respect to Rob Halford, in the event you do find yourself at one of the US shows – make sure you head out early to check out both Goatwhore & Skeletonwitch as they are the only bands* worth the price of admission on this traveling failure of a festival.

*Exodus will appear only at the Southern California date and are also worth your time.

 Update 07/19/10: Only adding to the joke – Blabbermouth is reporting that Sunset Strip Gods STEEL PANTHER have been added to this line up.  You know it’s a sad show when a “comedy” band blows every “real” band off the fucking stage (which is exactly what Steel Panther shall do). 





The 2010 Revolver Golden Gods Awards

The 2010 Revolver Golden Gods Awards
04/08/10 – Club Nokia: Los Angeles, CA
words/photos/videos by concertconfessions.com

OK, I admit it, I totally geeked out last night. In the deep trenches of confusion over guest lists vs. will call along with a “black” carpet ceremony, I was informed that my press credentials were at the VIP table. So I head into to the clusterfuck that is the VIP area outside Club Nokia in downtown Los Angeles when I became the meat of a rock royalty sandwich. On my left side is the King of Darkness – Ozzy Osbourne and his people. To my right were Slash and his entourage, trying to get through. In front of me stood God himself – Motorhead mad man Lemmy Kilmister. Looking me straight in the eyes I simply said to the famed Rainbow Room resident “I don’t think I belong here”. He told me he felt the exact same way. It was this moment that I realized that the 2010 Revolver Golden Gods would be a far superior experience compared to last years inaugural event.

Once inside the venue, the show kicked off with co hosts Andrew W.K. and six time WWE champ Chris “Y2J” Jericho doing test shots for the TV telecast. It was at this point that the violent aggressive meatheads in the crowd (and much like last year, there were plenty of ‘em) began to boo Andrew W.K. – something that would occur all evening. If 2010 is my year to discover Andrew W.K (as I hope to catch him this summer on Warped Tour), let’s just say it didn’t get off to a good start. It’s not that he was bad, it’s well, and actually yeah he was bad.

As far as the presenters go, there were some truly amazing moments. While I won’t tell you who won (ok, so there is a spoiler or two below, but you get the idea), the action was non stop all night. From Alice Cooper and Rob Zombie presenting together to Marilyn Manson bringing up the fight of the West Memphis 3, seeing so many stars in one place on one night was truly magical. But you can catch all that on VH1 Classics in May; my job is to share with you what went down on stage from some of Metal’s biggest acts.

SLASH

The first musical act of the night was legendary rock God – Slash.  Playing in support of his just released self-titled record, the axe slinger welcomed a plethora of guests to the rotating stage.  First at bat was Andrew Stockdale of the band Wolfmother.  It’s amazing to me, no matter how hard he tries, this guy just fails.  While his vocals sounded fine on “By The Sword” – between the outfit, the moves and just looking like a scared child at the schools music recital, I was not impressed.  Thankfully I was able to drown out is Robert Plant rip off vocals and focus on Slash (who believe it or not I have never once seen perform live).  Alter Bridge and Slash’s touring front man Myles Kennedy came out next for a song I believe is called “Back From Cali”.  I am not very familiar with Alter Bridge, but lets just say Kennedy has indeed undergone a Sunset Strip makeover since teaming up with Slash, and it worked.  His voice sounded great, the song kicked all kinds of tail end and I could easily enjoy a full set with him behind the mic.

From this point on, the set went from solid to superb.  He may have told me he didn’t belong, but when Lemmy joined Slash on stage for a rocking version of “Doctor Alibi” well lets just say he sure as hell didn’t seem out of place.  As soon as the last chords wrapped up from the final “Slash” original of the night, the bands bassist and drummer quickly exited the stage.  As soon as a bass was slapped on to Lemmy, Dave Grohl snuck behind the large kit and the band busted out the Motorhead classic “Ace of Spades.”  This was hands down the musical highlight of the night.  Watching the three living legends bash out one of the top 10 heavy metal juggernauts of all time was a once in a lifetime moment that I am truly thankful to have witnessed.

AS I LAY DYING

It’s crazy to think that these San Diego thrashers have been on the scene for almost a decade now. In a lot of ways, they are responsible for me revisiting my love for metal after years and years of only listening to jam bands like Phish and moe. Having seen the band at least a half dozen times over the years, the highlight of the brief three song set was the debut of a song from their upcoming record The Powerless Rise. The songs title is “Beyond Our Suffering” and let me just say it is brutal. The duel guitar attack of Phil Sgrosso and Nick Hipa never lets up, and give the perfect backdrop for the deep growl of vocalist Tim Lambesis. From the opening number “Confined” to the set closing “The Sound of Truth”, sadly three songs in fifteen minutes is just not enough As I Lay Dying for me. With the earlier mentioned album about to hit record stores, I can’t wait to catch these guys headline later in the year.

THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA

I have now seen The Devil Wears Prada three times. I am sure they are nice kids, but they just don’t do it for me. The breakdowns are cool, but I feel the vocals of Mike Hranica are a bit weak and the entire thing just feels forced. The band opened with “Danger: Wildman” and did a nice job of having songs segue into each other. Their breif set closed with “Assistant To The Regional Manager” which you can view below.

I have an open invitation to any The Devil Wears Prada fans. I feel like I want to like these guys, but I am missing something. If you catch these guys on the road later this year, send us a review, tell us what the appeal is, because I am cleary missing it.

THE BRIAN POSEHN ALL STARS

Last years host returned to the stage at Club Nokia, this time to perform a track from his recent comedy/metal record – Fart & Weiner Jokes. Backing Mr. Poshen (who for the record is a kind and wonderful human being) was Drummer John Tempestra (Testament, White Zombie) bassist Joey Vera (Armored Saint), guitarists Brendon Smalls (Dethklok), Scott Ian (Anthrax, SOD) and my ex girlfriend* Brett Anderson (The Donnas) on backing vocals.  What’s sad is despite being totally sober, and watching the same song performed twice (you have to love TV tapings eh?); I can’t even tell you what it was called.  I think it’s probably because I couldn’t stop staring at Brett.  I mean dude, wow she is hot and she had some very sexy boots on.  Ok, all stalker tendencies aside, the song was basically what you would expect from this group of talented thrashers.  Anchored down by Vera and Tempestra, the song (which produced the largest pit of the night, go figure) was some silly diatribe about being more metal than you.   During the second take, I saw perhaps the most disturbing thing all night.  Some juice head d-bag in an affliction shirt and his Rock of Love reject girlfriend picked a fight with some skinny screamo kid.  As the trailer trash repeatedly smacked this poor kid, the same thug bouncers who had a kid arrested from consuming cannabis laughed as this poor kid was attacked for no good reason.  Just another excuse for me to hate everything that is Club Nokia at LA Live.

FAT FACTORY

I could write a novel on how rotten Dino Cazares is.  However, he strikes me as the type of guy who is lame enough and petty enough to sue me for slander.  So instead of telling you stories about him throwing out homophobic remarks at the Rainbow Room staff or how I once watched him flipped out and refused to sign an autograph for members of the Armed Forces on leave from Iraq, I will just tell you this.  For me, Fear Factory died when Burton and Dino kicked Christian and Raymond out of the band.  From here on out, I refuse to call them by that name in print until the situation is made right.  So for those who choose to support those two no talent ass clowns, I will tell you this about their performance.  Before the band played two new songs, and “Replica” (complete with Burton “Bon Jovi Hair” C Bell and his trademark flat and off-key vocals) Vinnie Paul and Joey Jordison presented an award (spoiler alert) for best drummer to the late Avenged Sevenfold skin pounder James “The Rev” Sullivan.  As his family was accepting the award on his behalf, Dino (who was getting ready to perform) peaked from behind the revolving stage and was doing this “I am so cool dig me routine”.  It was rude and disgusting, yet completely expected from the likes of Dino Cazares.  I know I am not alone in rolling my eyes anytime Cazares is riding coattails backstage, and I know many who agree with me that he is a pathetic piece of shit.  Heck, I am sure there was a reason he got the boot from FF in the first place.  So while I did watch Fat Factory perform, they were the only band I didn’t shoot video or photos of, as they were not worth the space on the memory card.  Lets hope this bastardization of a once great band doesn’t last very long.  Likewise, Christian and Raymond, I hope you win your lawsuit against these guys.

Marilyn Manson

Now that I am done getting the negative out, how about we do something positive?  Lets talk about Marilyn Manson.  Here is my take on Mr. Brian Warner.  Very smart guy who makes crappy music.  So the fact I got to hear him speak about something as important as the West Memphis 3 was a treat indeed.

ROB ZOMBIE

I saw Rob Zombie twice in the late 1990’s and was not impressed either time.  He seemed to be out of breath the entire time and just seemed to not be feeling the crowd and music.  Not being a fan of the original Hellbilly Deluxe mixed with me being butt hurt over the break up of Rob Zombie, I walked away.  Over the next decade, when not running into Mr. Zombie at Baja Fresh, I have pretty much ignored him, his music and his movies (I did catch the tail end of Halloween at Festival 8, which was a blast seeing as I had a blank space where my mind should be).  Recently, a copy of Hellbilly Deluxe 2 ended up on my desk and I decided I needed a laugh and put it on.  You can imagine my shock when instead of laughing; I actually really enjoyed the album.

Closing out the show, Zombie (armed with main axe man John 5 as well as the live debut of new drummer – the extraordinary Joey Jordison of Slipknot) took to the stage and bitched out the crowd.  Backed with Bud Light ads and banners for the Jimmy Kimmel Live show (which is supposed to air April 22nd), Zombie ranted and raved about how dead the crowd was and how they didn’t have to play if they were not showed respect.  My initial thoughts were- Great, here we go again another dreadful performance.  After a “Zombie” chant failed to take hold and fans began throwing garbage across the venue, actor Danny Trejo came out on stage, ripped off his shirt and left.  The confused crowd just stood around and collectively said “wait, that was that dude from that movie wasn’t it?”  Zombie and band mates followed and ripped into a rocking version of “More Human Than Human”.  I have to be honest, I don’t think I have ever seen Jordison play so slowly, ha-ha.  From there, Mr. Zombie mentioned how he knew the fans didn’t want to hear new music, but he had to play just one song.  Thankfully, he picked my favorite from the new album “Mars Need Woman”.  With larger than life moves, Zombie owned the stage, stomping in tune to the thunderous riffs of John 5.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bufal2DmgPE

The band once again left the stage as roadies tore down all the Bud Light/Jimmy Kimmel flare.  Upon the return to the stage, Zombie kept true to his word and played exciting and well executed versions of “Thunder Kiss ‘65” and “Dragula”.  By this point, he had the fans in his pocket, as the crowd pogo and bounced off each other.  Thrilled, Zombie decided to close the night with some OT fees for the union boys.  Declaring he would raise hell if the PA turned off, Zombie screamed “Superbeast” and not missing a beat the three piece backing band dove straight into the original Hellbilly number.

While it was only five songs, Rob Zombie’s headline set at the 2010 Golden Gods triumphed over the other sets of his I have witnessed.  The man has grown leaps and bounds as a performer, is energized and has a backing band that simply destroys.  It almost makes me wish I was heading out to the land of the dirt people to catch him on Mayhem later this summer.

If the first annual Golden Gods was a massive embarrassment, the second annual Golden Gods is clearly on the right path.  We have BET awards, Country Music Awards and the laugh out loud loser-fest known as The Grammy Awards®.  While there were a few issues, the show never had a dull moment (compared to the massive wait between bands/awards etc last year).  The fact that fans were able to vote for the winners versus record companies paying for awards was a brilliant idea, as was the rotating stage for bands.  With a full TV camera crew and a presenter’s podium that stuck out into the crowd, I really can’t wait to relive this wonderful night on VH1 Classic in May.  Cheers Golden Gods Awards – thanks for a wonderful night, I can’t wait to see you next year.

*Ok, sure she may have grown up a few miles from me, but sadly I dated a gal from Gunn High School, not Paly.  Hey, I can dream right?

Musically Speaking: The 2009 Golden Gods Awards

The 2009 Golden Gods Awards

Club Nokia – Los Angeles, CA

Words/Photos by Reverend Justito/concertconfessions.com

 

This past Tuesday night, I headed to Club Nokia here in Los Angeles to check out the first annual Epiphone/Revolver Golden Gods Awards presented by Honda Fury. I met up with our contest winner Jeff (cool guy) and fellow talesfromthepit.net user Cheryl (a.k.a. Krazy For Korn/also very cool) to check out the whose who of heavy metal (the show even included a black carpet instead of the traditional red). Despite the fact that the winners list leaked on blabbermouth.net a few hours before the show, it is not my goal to tell you about the winners here You can simply watch the show on MTV2 on May 2nd who won the rather unique awards.

God presenting an award to the Rainbow Bar & Grill

God presenting an award to the Rainbow Bar & Grill

Part of the advertising in local street papers and the internet that made me excited for this show was a DJ set by Corey Taylor of Slipknot. I have a lot of respect for Taylor and thought watching him DJ would be a real treat. No disrespect to Taylor, he picked a great mix of metal (everything from Priest and Black Sabbath to White Zombie and Pantera) and punk (Minor Thread anyone?). I however expected him to spin vinyl, not play songs from his IPOD. “Spinning” from the venues soundboard, Taylor was kind enough to take photos with fans and seemed to be having a blast. Most important, he got the crowed pumped up for the evening, one classic at a time.

Corey Taylor - Golden Gods 09:  Club Nokia, Los Angeles CA

Corey Taylor - Golden Gods 09: Club Nokia, Los Angeles CA

The first musical performance of the evening was Killswitch Engage. I was somewhat shocked that they opened the show, but looking back, you want a big opening for television and they definitely can fill those shoes. The band opened with the Guitar Hero hit “My Curse”. As the crowd simply stood and watched like it was a Tuesday night in Silver Lake, guitarist Adam D taunted the crowd, calling them names the censors will have to remove from the broadcast. Up next was a new song (name unknown) that very well may have been making its live debut. Just my impression – it felt very light and I hate to say it but an attempt at a commercial hit. The band closed their three song set with their cover of Dio’s “Holy Diver.” About ½ way though the song, the venue opened up the second section of the three tiered lower floor. Many including myself moved up to be closer to the action. As front man Howard Jones belted out the classic, Adam D continued to call the crowd another word for cats. The band thanked the crowd and left the stage, seeming disappointed by the lack luster response.

Holy Diver - Killswitch Engage 04/07/09 - Golden Gods Awards 2009

Holy Diver - Killswitch Engage 04/07/09 - Golden Gods Awards 2009

The second performance of the night was by Riverside Grindcore up and comers Suicide Silence. I had never heard the music of this five piece band and all I have to say is this. Heavy fucking elephant tits. Wow, these guys were amazing. The band wore typical sneakers and tight black jeans, but up top the band had on white button up shirts, black ties and nice suit jackets. As the band played their four song set, the nights first circle pits got going up on the front of the floor. These guys won me over big time, and I will be seeking them out again for sure.

Mitch Lucker of Suicide Silence - Golden Gods 2009:  Club Nokia - Los Angeles, CA

Mitch Lucker of Suicide Silence - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia - Los Angeles, CA

I don’t recall what award he gave out, but Hatebreed front man (and this decades Rikki Rachtman) Jamey Jasta warned the crowd that he expected to see EVERYONE moving during his bands set. When they hit the stage a few minutes later, the the audience did not disappoint the Connecticut hardcore band. They opened the set with “Destroy Everything” which the fans took to heart. Many were upset that they were stuck on the second tier of the lower floor (the front section of the floor was limited to 100 people who got paper bracelets allowing them access up front) and decided to simply hop the rail. This continued into the second song “To The Threshold” as the circle pit in the front grew larger and larger. Jasta was very talkative during the brief set. In between shout outs to Cypress Hill’s Sen Dog (who was in the circle pit wearing a Black Label Society leather vest) the front man reminded the audience that they were on TV and that they were to get crazy. Hands down, Hatebreed (who I have never seen, but always wanted too) played the most high energy and brutal set of the night.

Hatebreed @ the 2009 Golden Gods Awards:  Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA

Hatebreed @ the 2009 Golden Gods Awards: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA

The fourth band of the night was All That Remains. A lot of people in the section I was in seemed very upset that they were the next to last band. Another band I don’t know much about, the first song they played was not only very out of place, but rather terrible. Front man Philip Labonts vocals sounded weak and powerless. If Godsmack is Alice in Chains on their worst day, All That Remains is Godsmack after their worst week ever. As the crowd booed between songs, (something the crowd did a lot over the night. Metallica, Protest The Hero, and Atreyu front man Alex Varkatzas were all booed) the band shrugged it off and kept rolling. I will say this, each song (they played three total) seemed to get better, but really that’s just me trying to find something positive to say.

All That Remains - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA

All That Remains - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA

The night closed with a set that left many deaf (myself included) by Megadeth. The three song set list was voted on by fans. The legends opened with “Peace Sells”. With the bass line that doubles as the into music for MTV News, the band launched into the 1986 classic as many in the house went crazy. The song went right into the bands second number – “Sweating Bullets.” The band sounded tight as pits swirled and Mustaine sang the psycho vocals with his signature growl. The band closed their set with “Holy Wars…The Punishment Due”. This is one of my favorite Megadeth songs, and for the first time all night I wish I could hop the rail to get into the main pit. The band killed it as it cranked out the legendary thrash number. As fast as they came, the band left the stage much to the disappointment of many fans who paid expecting a longer set. With that, the first ever North American metal show came to an end. Make sure to check it out May 2nd on MTV2. Look for me bootlegging in the Lamb Of God t-shirt :)

Megadeth - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA 04/07/09

Megadeth - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA 04/07/09

 

 





No Fear Energy Tour 04/03/09: Palladium – Hollywood, CA

Municipal Waste/God Forbid/DevilDriver/Children Of Bodom & Lamb Of God:

The Palladium – Hollywood, CA 04/03/09

Words/Photos by Reverend Justito

There is nothing more shocking than showing up to a show in Los Angeles on Friday night at the early hour of 7:30pm only to discover that the main floor is operating at capacity and you are stuck in the very back of the already packed auditorium. How could this be I thought to myself. God Forbid is not even ½ way into their 25 minute set and I have to enjoy this carnage from the back? Shocked, I did what any self righteous Hollywood douche bag wearing boxer briefs filled with cameras and a mini pharmacy of fun would do. I walked up to the bar and ordered a plastic cup of vodka with a splash of energy drink for color (ask for light ice and remember that good tips = good karma). After all, when you get booted not once but twice from the various guest lists and still make your way into the venue without paying a cent, you know your luck is good and nothing will get in your way. With that said, I set out to make the Palladium my personal playground, and I did exactly that.

God Forbid

 

Unable to snap any photos/videos of God Forbid due to poor location and an abundance of security, I enjoyed three songs from the New Jersey band. A perennial opening act, I have seen these guys as an support a whose who of metal bands more times than I can remember. While I don’t own a single record, I will say that they never disappoint at getting the crowd excited for what’s to come. Days after losing guitarist Doc Coyle, it seemed to me that the band didn’t miss a beat. Replacement guitarist Kris Norris (formerly of Darkest Hour) fit right into the fold knocking out riffs as a sea of devil horns rose in approval. Before the three little ice cubes could melt away into my drink the band had already said goodnight. Plotting my attack, I walked towards the main floor entrance and confirmed what I had fully anticipated to see. The two guards simply could not handle the stream of people leaving the floor with the stream of wristband-less youth using the large opening to bully their way past.

Devildriver

I am a huge As I Lay Dying fan. With them on the bill, the No Fear Energy drink tour as they are calling it was not to be missed. However, as many are aware As I Lay Dying was forced to drop off the first five dates in order for front man Tim Lambesis and his wife to wrap the 18th month process of adopting a child from a third world nation whose name escapes me. With Suicidal Tendencies filling in on the other four dates (they were not allowed to fill in for the Hollywood show as they had played the very same venue the week before/Click here for full review) we were lucky enough to get Santa Barbara’s most mediocre metal band as a replacement. It would be very easy for me to rip the generic DevilDriver apart, but I will just leave it at this. While craptastic on many levels, DevilDriver is far superior than the last band Dez Fafara fronted – the late 1990’s Nu Metal joke known as Cold Chamber. Despite watching the last three songs of their set with an open mind (I mingled with friends during most of the 30+ minute set) I simply have nothing kind to say. Next!

As soon as Devildriver left the stage I obtained another plastic cup full of Vodka with even less energy drink for color. My pal and I were in position to make our move onto the floor. Mi amigo went first and got through with nothing more than a tap on the shoulder that he blatantly ignored. I was right behind him, but a tiny Latina midget with huge cans cut right in front of my path. As I tripped over the pint size senorita I feared I would lose my shot despite not spilling a drop of my drink. I focused in and when the moment was right, I found a hole and went right through it as if I was Frank Gore beating up a defense on a brisk Sunday afternoon. It was almost too easy. With a drink in one hand, and my cell phone in the other, I was simply too important to stop and talk with tweedle dumb and tweedle dumber. As I mumbled something about the earlier mentioned midget and her large rack, I walked right past with nothing more than an “excuse me sir”. Those two suckers were overwhelmed with the daunting task of keeping the masses from the floor which was fine by me. After all, it is God’s will that I bring the people the real story behind the shows, and with the one two punch of Children Of Bodom and Lamb Of God still to come, there was no way I was not making it down to bootleg straight from the pit.

Children of Bodom

Children Of Bodom - Hollywood, CA 04/03/09

Children Of Bodom - Hollywood, CA 04/03/09

Long before the heroes hailing from Espoo Finland took the stage, the capacity crowd was chanting their name. BODOM, BODOM, BODOM rang through the hall. As soon as the lights went down the chants only grew in volume as the five men who make up Bodom took to the stage. Having imbibed a bevy of substances, I was ready to have my face melted by the melodic death metal masterminds. While their set was not terrible, I found myself expecting more. Perhaps with it being the second show of the tour, the band was a tad jet lagged, but overall it felt as they looked bored and were simply going through the motions. The crowd however did not seem to care as they went bonkers for Bodom. Songs like “Living Dead Beat” and “Hate Me!” caused huge circle pits to erupt upon the venues floor.

 

 With very dark stage lights that resulted in terrible photos, I found myself trying to keep up with keyboardist Janne Wirman and his multiple containers of alcohol Watching him double fist drinks made my liver hurt. During “Blooddrunk” alone he must have downed at least two cocktails. Knowing I was not leaving the floor anytime soon I graciously let him win. Perhaps this was a bad idea, as he later admitted to sucking real bad. Sure he blamed it on the monitors, but as front man Alexi Laiho encouraged the crowd to chant “Janne Fucked Up” the intoxicated musicians returned back to his post before launching into a violent version of “Downfall“. Overall, even a mediocre set by Children of Bodom is something pretty awesome. I have no doubt that these guys will pick up steam as they travel across North America.

 

Couple Gets Married At Children Of Bodom/Lamb Of God Show

I have seen a lot of crazy things go down at metal shows over the years, but what happened between the Bodom/Lamb Of God set change takes the cake. The Live Nation employed promoter of the show decided to use the stage left balcony to get married. After a beautiful version of “More Than Words” by Extreme (rumor has it Nuno actually played it with Steve Perry) the fans on the floor chanted for Lamb Of God as the minister began the ceremony. The minister quickly grew annoyed as sound check drowned out her words. Finally with a break in the roadies earning their paycheck, the couple said I do. The blushing bride walked to the edge of the balcony and tossed her bouquet down to the largely male crowd below.

Lamb of God

With the wedding now over, it was time to get brutal. The lights went down and a pre-recorded version of the first track from Lamb Of God’s latest record “Wrath” played from the PA. With my camera tightly in hand, the band emerged and the second “The Passing” ended went right into the second track on the new record – “In Your Words”. The place errupted and a large pit broke out right where I was standing. As bodies went flying past me, I think I may have been to inebriated to realize just how careless I was being. Whatever, it was Friday night and I am alive to tell the tale today right? As the set progressed, things just seemed to get faster, louder and crazier. Front man Randy Blythe owned the stage, running around, jumping from drum risers and informing the crowd that they were a bunch of syphilitic pussies for not cheering louder when he demanded we give ourselves a round of applause.

The set consisted of a lot of new material. Dueling guitar players Willie Adler and Mark Morton tore it up on songs like “Contractor” and “Broken Hands”. The crowd was very much into the new material, but the biggest pits came during now classics from the bands brutal back catalog.  “Walk With Me In Hell” sent fists flying as metal kids policed the pits taking out the big armed hardcore kids.  Even with that joke GWB out of office, “Now You’ve Got Something To Die For” is still an intense reminded that a pointless war is still taking place overseas. With it being a Hollywood show, the band gave shout outs to both Danzig and Casey Chaos. I am pretty sure the only song from their 2003 masterpiece was “Ruin”. Played perfectly, I didn’t think the floor could get any more crazy. However, as the band wrapped their roughly 70 minute set with “Laid To Rest” two massive whirlpools of human flesh moving in opposite directions broke out. It was nothing short of madness, yet somehow I survived the entire thing with the greatest of ease.

Lamb Of God 04/03/09: The Palladium - Hollywood, CA

Lamb Of God 04/03/09: The Palladium - Hollywood, CA

The band came back out after a quick break. Making fun of any meth head who got into a pickup truck and drove from the middle of no where to see the show, the Virginia 5 piece launched into what I guess would be their most commercial hit to date – “Redneck”. From the record Sacrament this song probably had the smallest pit of the night, as many got ready for what they had waited for all night. As “Redneck” wrapped, the band didn’t even have to tell the crowd what time it was. While they did warn anyone and everyone to get off the dance floor who didn’t know what was next, the smiles across the faces proved that these sick fucks were ready for an excuse to get violent on each other. As the band launched into their final number – “Black Label” (the only song played from their debut record New American Gospel) the crowd used the gargantuan dance floor to create the most massive wall of death I have ever seen. Charging at each other Braveheart style, bones were broken, faces busted open and pure anarchy ruled the sold out venue. As the mob became one, a circle pit that covered the entire floor formed from the carnage. It may be hands down the largest and fastest circle pit I have ever seen. As I watched through my camera lens (from the very back of the floor) I smiled watching the crazy fucks swirling for one last time. As the band left the stage, I once again confirmed what I have known for years. Lamb Of God is the most brutal, skull fucking American heavy metal band to emerge over the past 20 years. With six weeks of dates left on their current North American tour, the No Fear Energy Drink tour is one any heavy music fan should not miss.

 

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