Mayhem Festival -- Atlanta, GA -- August 12th, 2011
Alright, so this is my first review. If I mess up any of the formatting or anything, please be patient. Also, since the tour is basically over, I've decided to give my take on the bands since set lists have been floating around for a month.
After getting a late start, I arrived at the venue around 2:15, picked up my ticket, and headed in as Straight Line Stitch was finishing up. Since I didn't really hear any of their music, I can't really review their show.
Although they were playing early in the day, Red Fang was a huge reason I decided to go. The crowd didn't seem to be into these guys, although a few people up front tried (unsuccessfully) to start a pit. My only complaint is that their vocals should've been turned up.
All Shall Perish
Not a big fan of their music, but these guys did a great job of pumping the crowd up. They were well received, and put on a decent show.
Kingdom of Sorrow
Regardless of your personal feelings, its hard to deny that Jamey Jasta is one of the best frontmen in metal right now. I managed to get close to the rail, but stayed out of the pit. Lots of fist pumping, shouting, and even the occasional dance break. Kirk is one of my favorite guitarists in the business right now, and its clear to me that he and Jamey truly enjoy each being around each other. If anyone has even a passing interest in metal, I recommend going to a Kingdom of Sorrow show.
The tweens loved them. Need I say more?
These guys were a welcomed surprise. My friend knew them and loved them, but I had no idea who they were, nor that the Killswitch Engage drummer had a second band. We managed to get up to the front rail for this set. There was a security guard who would periodically throw cold water on the crowd to keep everyone cool, which I thought was great. I smiled and nodded at the guy, and he threw up the horns. Overall great atmosphere. The show ended with the two guitarists on top of the Jager trailer mooning the crowd.
Aside from Red Fang and Kingdom of Sorrow, the main reason I wanted to attend this year's Mayhem Fest was for the return of Machine Head. They hadn't played Atlanta since the '08 festival. Screaming every lyric and headbanging even though I was dehydrated and exhausted was definitely the highlight of the day for me. I was hoping they'd break into Davidian, but Halo is still an incredible closer. Lets hope it won't be another 3 years before these guys return.
Yeah, I probably butchered that name. I don't particularly care. These guys suck. I can appreciate what they're trying to do, but the promoters could've shelled out a little cash to get an actual closer for the side stages. Hell, just give the bands extended set lists. Regardless, I picked up a Machine Head set list and headed to the amphitheater.
Not a huge Trivium fan, but I was excited to see what the hype was about. An overall decent set, with what seemed to be a good mix of old and new stuff.
Kudos to Dave Mustaine for sticking with the tour for the last few dates, even though it was clear he wanted to be home resting. The last time I saw these guys was at Gigantour 2008. Oddly enough, they sounded way better at Mayhem Festival with Mustaine's injury than they did at their own festival. A great but abbreviated set.
My first "metal" show was Godsmack during the IV tour. 13 year old me would've loved to see the guys again, but I'm not a big fan of The Oracle, so I was skeptical. I was surprised to see that it was pretty much the same set list. Still, Voodoo is just a great song. Sully complained about the heat, and stated that the audience is used to it. Not true - the oppressive heat is awful no matter how long you've lived here.
My friend and I originally planned on leaving halfway through Disturbed's set to beat traffic, but ended up staying for the whole thing. GREAT production and stage show, but as people have already stated, Dave's voice needs a break. I know these guys are supposedly going on hiatus and all, but I expect them to tour again within 2 years or so. Overall a great way to end an obscenely hot and humid day.