OZZFEST MEETS KNOTFEST – Glen Helen Amphitheater – 11/5/17
A SlipKnot-less Knotfest didn’t miss a beat… In my opinion, the stronger of the two days, Sunday delivered an array of eclectic goodies that ranged from the Hard Rocking of LA’s Stitched Up Heart, to Legendary Thrash Metal-ers, Death Angel on to the balls-out Intensity of the Mighty Testament who closed out the small stages IN THE DARK! And then off to the Main stage to NOT see Eighteen Visions (see below), and close out the weekend with a triple dose of cool…. Stone Sour, a barely mobile Marilyn Manson and the stimulating, visual face-fuck of Living Cartoon, Rob Zombie!
And as I did with Ozzfest, instead of a review of each band I will offer some things that stood out to me during the shows… Some good…some not as good…some interesting…and some probably not as much… but that’s for you to decide…
Visuals Galore! This was my first time catching Rob Zombie in concert and what the hell took me so damn long?!?! Zombie’s stage show felt like his movie, “House of 1000 Corpses” came to Life. Dancing, Gyrating, Kicking, Headbanging in his fringed outfit… No Moss Grows on Rob Zombie.
His band are amazing in their own right. John 5 everybody!!! He was an electrified, guitar virtuoso, calm and cool with fingers that defied the time-space continuum. Piggy D (bass) and Ginger Fish (drums) created a driving, thumping beat that brought the groovy, horror show to 3D levels. Rob Zombie was just added to my list of “Can’t Miss” shows. A very worthy successor to the Knotfest, SlipKnot vacancy
Marilyn Manson is man who can make the best out of a bad situation. Theatrical, explicit and deliberate, the hobbled Manson (who is still recovering from a broken leg sustained in an ill advised prop climb) was flanked by two “medical assistants” in surgical scrubs and masks. They assisted Manson to and from each of his mobility devices which included an electric throne that he was able to stand against, a knee scooter, a wheelchair and a gurney. It took time for Manson to make it to each of his travel-mobility equipment which allowed his band consisting of Tyler Bates (lead guitar), Paul Wiley (rhythm guitar), Gil Sharone (drums) and new bassist, Juan Alderete (Taking over for long-time MM compatriot, Twiggy Ramirez) adequate time to play some haunting instrumental selections. The headline of this evening however was during the song, “We Know Where You Fucking Live”, where Manson sang into a microphone affixed to the scope of a fake assault rifle. The visual was meant to represent the normalization of guns in society. Bad timing that it was introduced on the day that yet ANOTHER mass shooting took place just that afternoon. The media so far has had a field day with it which overshadowed the fact that Manson put on an amazing show and sounded incredible!
Even thought SlipKnot weren’t here as a band, they had representation in Lead singer, Corey Taylor and his band Stone Sour. Lack of energy is not something Corey suffers from. He utilized every inch of the stage and offered the San Bernardino faithful a taste of his more melodic rock side. Not gonna lie… I’m more of a Stone Sour guy than a SlipKnot guy. And what this band loses in the visual, it certainly makes up for in quality of songs. Tonight’s offering was a nice selection from their discography with a heavy dose of their latest album, “Hydrograd”.
Stone Sour are:
Corey Taylor – Vocals
Josh Rand – Rhythm Guitar
Ray Mayorga – Drums
Johnny Chow – Bass
Christian Martucci – Lead Guitar
I watched Eighteen Visions set and can still say that I have never seen Eighteen Visions. For a band trying to make a comeback after their break-up 10 years ago, this would be a great opportunity to showcase what they are now offering. Instead, the crowd was treated to smoke. Masses and Masses of billowing smoke that obscured the band for the majority of their set. Whether it was a band choice or the heavy finger of an over eager stage hand, the visual, or lack of, garnered more attention and discussion than their auditory offerings.