Rockstar Uproar Festival 2010
Rockstar presented the country with the first Uproar Tour these past few months, with huge expectations and even better results. The mini festival combined the lesser known bands like Hail the Villain and New Medicine along with rock superstars such as Avenged Sevenfold and Disturbed. Starting off the day with smaller bands got the fans warmed up before heading into the main show.
The first band on the jagermeister stage, a local act called The Orange Blossom Special, was a very different act than all of the other bands, definitely a more pop rock sounding band. An odd choice for this kind of festival, but they were impressive none the less. Canadian rockers Hail the Villain were up first and put on a great set. Front man Bryan Crouch led a nonstop set of singing, screaming, marching, and action. I had never seen this band before that show and they impressed me a lot. Next up was New Medicine, easily one of my new favorite bands. They played a very solid set with comical songs such as “Rich Kid” and more serious emotional songs like “Little Sister”. I highly recommend picking up their new record “Race You to the Bottom” once it finally hits stores, or you can grab an advance copy at the remaining Uproar Tour stops. Airbourne was up next and had one of the wildest sets of the day. Lead singer Joel O’Keeffe spent a good portion of the time jumping off of speakers and yelling at the crowd having a great time. For the last song of the set, O’Keeffe jumped on a crew members shoulders who continued to carry him into and through the crowd while he played a face melting guitar solo. After a good ten minutes in the crowd, he returned to the stage and hopped on top of the stage right PA stacks to finish off the set high above the festival. Definitely a powerful sight and a great way to end their show. The last band playing the Jager stage was HellYeah! They were out to prove they were the hardest band on the tour, and they did in a big way! The crowd went absolutely nuts the entire time. Decked out in jean jackets and leather, the guys played almost nonstop the whole time. Coolest part of their set was seeing 3 or 4 kids no older than 10 smashed up against the front of the barricade singing along to every word. Rock and Roll!
After heading into the amphitheatre, Halestorm kicked off the main stage with a bang. Lzzy Hale walked out alone absolutely wailing over the mic, kicking off a great set filled with action. From amazing vocals and incredible guitar riffs, to an intense drum solo that included all members of the band playing on trashcans together, Halestorm was a very impressive band to see. After Halestorm, Stone Sour took the stage. While their set was a little more mellow than Halestorm’s, it was still solid none the less. They played a mix of new and old songs, including fan favorite “Through the Glass.” They had a decent stage presence, but the crowd didn’t seem that into it. The next band was Avenged Sevenfold, who BY FAR had the BEST set of the entire day. Staring off with one of their crew members jumping from the amphitheatre rafters and “hanging himself”, Avenged appeared amid bursts of pyro and launched into their new hit “Nightmare.” From start to finish, the crowd went insane, and the Avenged boys put on a show worthy of the crowd’s reaction. Their set was an audio and visual assault on your senses. They played a solid hour of new and old songs, with fire exploding all around them. The set included an emotional tribute to former A7X drummer Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan, which brought the whole crowd to their feet cheering. The boys left the crowd screaming for another song. Unfortunately, since they were not headlining, they couldn’t give the crowd what they wanted. Highlight of the entire set for me was seeing drummer Mike Portnoy roasting marshmallows in the pyro flames in between songs! With the amazing set they performed, expect much bigger things to come for Avenged. I’m not sure how much bigger they can get, but knowing them, they’ll find a way! Finishing off the night was Disturbed, coming off a very successful new album release the day before. To be completely honest, I was very disappointed in Disturbed’s set, especially since their new album had just come out. Don’t get me wrong, the music and sound was spot on! They sound just as great live as they do on their CD. Unfortunately their live presence was just boring. I have never seen another band that basically stood still the whole time they were onstage. Sadly, the very few times that the band members decided to walk around the stage were the most active parts of the set. The band to crowd interaction was very slim, and almost sounded scripted and boring when David Draiman was talking. The crowd noticed this too, as a good half of them left after the first couple of songs. It was an unfortunate downfall at the end of a great day of music. I personally believe that Avenged Sevenfold deserved the headlining spot on the Uproar Tour.
Overall, the day was great. You can’t go wrong with a full lineup of good bands and all the free Rockstar you want! The tour was a great success with the fans, and hopefully we will see this tour return in 2011.