OCTOBER 1st 2011
Auburn,WA-10/01/2011-White River Amphitheatre
Review By: Ayako Mayumi
Photos By: Peter Ruttan
For the last few years Rockstar Uproar Festival has been building up to be a show where you get crowds between 12 to 16,000 fans and ages ranging from 8-65. It’s a nationwide hard rock/metal music tour which has superseded the Rockstar Mayhem Tour here in the U.S. The tour made a stop at the Auburn WA Sat, October 1st, and seeing as I live only a 2.5 hour drive I naturally attended.
The event featured two stages and nine bands. The Jagermeister Stage was set up as General Admission, and played host to four acts: Hell or Highwater, Art of Dying, Black Tide and Fozzy. The Rockstar Main Stage was home to Escape the Fate, Bullet for My Valentine, Seether, Three Days Grace and Avenged Sevenfold.
Hell or Highwater took the stage, a metal band created by Atreyu drummer Brandon Saller. With a twist of hard rock fused metal their head banging set could only be described with one word. Classic. During their set the entire band would get into synchronized with the crowd has Brandon emerges behind the kit to front vocals, by singing his heart out to ignite the next rock 'n' roll firestorm. Overall it was an enjoyable set that reminded me of an older generation of rock and look forward to seeing these guys again.
Art of Dying played a fast, hard, and entertaining set. The Canadian band from Vancouver BC was definitely one of the bands with the most stage presence during the day. Vocalist, Jonny Hetherington was loaded with energy that had powerfully march about the stage throughout their set. Greg Bradley and Tavis Stanley played to the crowd and didn’t miss a beat. It was truly something great to see these guys live for the first time.
Next up was Black Tide from Miami Florida the band started their set playing the hockey anthem “Warriors In Time” from there debut album Light from Above. The energy was only raised as the band broke into their next song, “Bury Me,” an aggressive song that really got the crowd going. Their music has a perfectly refined sound and energy that I really liked. Zakk Sandler on Bass was great on stage running back and forth from the mic stand and Steven Spence on drums was particular animated behind the kit. I would recommend checking these guys out when you get the chance.
The last band of the outdoor side stage event was Fozzy. Originating from Atlanta, Georgia with former WWE wrestler Chris Jericho on lead vocals the band put on a set, which was by far one of the most intense. The crowd response was crazy for Fozzy as Jericho had more fist pumping and crowd surfing in the crowd. There seemed to be a never ending Y2J fans tried to get as close as possible to the band they love.
After that the concert moved to the main stage with Escape the Fate, Bullet For My Valentine Seether, Three Days Grace, and Avenged Sevenfold. Escape The Fate and Seether put on a decent metal rock show. I can easily see both these bands back at next years line up as Escape the Fate, are a great young band full of energy playing songs, Choose Your Fate, 10 Miles Wide, and Issues off their last self-titled album. Veterans Seether opened with Gasoline to set the mood and had the crowd rocking out and they followed with Fine Again and Broken. Now, most Seether shows are dark...really dark so for me the stage needs more light but I think for vocalist, guitarist and songwriter Shaun Morgan it suits him best.
Bullet For My Valetine and Three Days Grace for me really stood out because of there pure mass appeal with the crowd and tight hooks and melodies that these bands performed in front of a nearly sold out crowd. Bullet For My Valentine left off some their more melodic songs and just gave the crowd a impressive metal setlist. They opened with the hits like, Your Betrayal, and Pleasure & Pain off their last album, “Fever.” If you ever get a chance to catch Bullet For my Valentine get your ticket now! Three Days Grace are great fun to watch as they opened with The Good Life and singer’s Adam Gontier voice was spot on.
Headliners Avenged Sevenfold gave it everything they had as they played to finish the night, as their show was truthfully one of the most theatrical out of all the acts this evening. With special effects including a large skull wing backdrop, bursts of fire, and fireworks, everything was not only exciting, but simply amazing to see. M. Shadows was excellent on front vocals and heart throbs Synyster Gates on guitar and Johnny Christ got the most girl screams and metal horns in the air. Overall it was great day and I hope the other 16,000 fans had a great day like i did. I truly think this lineup was one of the strongest the organizers put together for Uproar making for a great festival south of seattle.