Author and Photographer: Ian Urquhart
Nothing but metal could be felt in the air around Worcester, Massachusetts on April 20th, 2018. Home to many metal and rock concerts, the Worcester Palladium was set to host the New England Hardcore and Metal Music Festival of 2018. Bands stretched across the United States met in Worcester, MA to celebrate the awesomeness of what is metal music. Clear skies, warm sun, loud music and smiles all around could be seen and felt. Let’s break down the breakdowns.
Although the festival included over thirty hardcore and/or metal bands, Headrush TV was fortunate to cover a handful of talented groups. Let’s begin.
Epicenter – Straight out of Boston, the Epicenterfocuses mainly on their technicality when performing. A strong progressive, thrash metal vibe was given off throughout their performance. One neat detail about this band is that their drummer, Zak King, took over the lead vocals for Epicenter. Very innovative band with a lot to offer.
Sentinels – Traveling from their home state of New Jersey, Sentinels got everyone moving. A strong Born of Osiris influence could be heard in their performance. Both Thomas Cardone and Chris Dombrowski (guitarists) timed their progressive melodies with the kick drum of Dave Rucki, perfectly. A fundamentally driven, Progressive Metal band is hard to come by now-a-days, but these guys brought the heavy.
Noxii Arena – Led by Andrew Shea (lead vocalist), Noxii Arenamost definitely represented the Rhode Island heavy metal community. With hints of Whitechapel and Unearth being heard throughout their set, Noxii Arena looked to have felt right at home at the Palladium. Heavy. Fast. Technical. Noxii Arenagot the job done and got the Massachusetts faithful talking. If you have a chance to catch a Noxii Arena set, it is highly recommended you do so.
Barbarian – Also originating from Rhode Island, Barbarian brought a unique vision to their post-hardcore jams. With Mike Carp leading the vocals, Barbarian continued the onslaught of what was being made of the Worcester Palladium. There was a bit of a change when it comes to sound with this group. Hints of Beartooth as well as Memphis May Fire could be hear throughout their set. A pleasant surprise with no one complaining.
Deathamphetamine – Heading about fifteen minutes north of Massachusetts, the Nashua, NH boys of Deathamphetamineeasily stole the show on the upstairs stage of the Palladium. Observing the crowd, Deathamphetamine had the most fans and shirts scattered amongst the spectators. Additionally, their Groove Metal vibe took everyone for a wild ride. This sound was a bit different from the other bands performing. However, this change of pace really sat in with the Worcester faithful. A strong Lamb of God influence was felt throughout the set, as well.
Within the Ruins – With regards to the Main Stage performers of the Palladium, Within the Ruins definitely won the hearts of those watching/moshing. This night was a bittersweet event with it being Tim Goergen’s (lead vocalist) last show as the lead man to Within the Ruins. After a wild run, Tim hung up the microphone while passing it along to Steve Tinnon. Speaking of which, Within the Ruins’ fans were given a taste of Steve’s talents as he was able to sing during Within the Ruin’s last song. This was a heavy hitting performance. If given the chance, catch the Within The Ruinsfellas on tour.
Delain – Charlotte Wessels. Nothing more needs to be said. Lzzy Hale, who? Delain’s gothic rock vibe while being instrumentally influenced with symphonic metal, threw everyone for a whirlwind. With a decade of performing under their belts, Delain certainly knew how to work the crowd. It was a breath of fresh air being able to see such a dominate and strong, female vocalist representing the metal genre so genuinely. There were some whispers amongst the fans mentioning how Delain “sort of sounds like Arch Enemy.” Such a comparison would make sense. In summary, go see Delain if and when possible.
It is always reassuring to see so many people gather in one location to support a scene that gets criticized more than others. To show that there are thousands of people willing to travel and celebrate hardcore and metal music. With so many talented musicians expressing their love and devotion to their craft, it is only fitting to represent each band to their fullest. Having this annual festival speaks volumes to those who wish to keep the hardcore and metal scene alive and thriving.
Until next year and until the next metal/hardcore show, cheers my friends.
By: Anthony Cannella
In April, the Redemption Tour, featuring a stacked line-up of Tantric, Saving Abel, and Puddle of Mudd, came through the Chicagoland area… and completely rocked the Patio Theatre. For those unfamiliar with the venue, the Patio Theatre is a landmark in Chicago dating back to the 1920’s. Throughout the years, this location has been shut down several times, each time changing owners, but there are characteristics about this place that will always last; including an intense sound system, a monstrous screen that hovers behind the stage that lights up the room and a close connection to the fans, allowing people by the stage.
The historic venue makes for a grungy experience. Due to how close you are to the band and the ground shaking from the sound, which is perfect for Puddle of Mudd, since they are considered a post-grunge Rock band.
A major factor that makes this tour one to put on your radar, is the perfect selections of opening bands. As the night started, the rock band from Louisville, Tantric, honored the crowd with a remarkable set. It was quite an experience to witness Tantric’s lead vocalist Hugo Ferreira, who is the only original band member of Tantric. Tantric undeniably got the crowd's attention and left us prepared for Saving Abel.
As Saving Abel took the stage, the crowd lit up- since we knew this band instigates a party with any crowd they are presented. As Saving Abel’s set continued, you couldn’t help, but to admire the instrumentals of Jason Null, Scott Bartlett, Scott Wilson, and Blake Dixon. In addition to the admirable instrumentals, Saving Abel’s lead vocalist since 2008, Scotty Austin, belts out all the hits to perfection making it a show you don’t want to miss.
As Saving Abel wrapped up their song setlist, Scotty made it clear that they weren’t going to leave us without playing their chart-topping song “Addicted”. Being the rockstar that Scotty Austin is, he saw a perfect opportunity to make the venue go crazy as he leaped into the crowd when “Addicted” started. You could see how the place erupts in the video below, leaving us ready for Puddle of Mudd. It is great to see that after all these years Saving Abel still rocks every venue that they perform at, which is exciting due to Scotty informing us after the show that new music is being released soon!
As we waited for Puddle of Mudd to come on to perform, fans were honestly unsure of what we were going to get due to the band being unpredictable lately based on recent reviews. For the Patio Theatre in Chicago though, we can assure you that they came for business as they blew the roof off the venue. Puddle of Mudd came on stage and wasted no time as they played a plethora of their number one mainstream Rock singles. Their setlist compiled of hits ranging from the album Come Clean (2001) to the album Volume 4: Song in the Key of Love & Hate (2009). For those who have not seen Puddle of Mudd live, it is highly recommended that you do, so that you can witness just how well this band collaborates with each other.
Lead singer, Wes Scantlin, is without a doubt a site to witness as he graces us with his famous modern grunge-like vocals. It is clear throughout the whole set that he is extremely passionate about his music. This is detected with each scream he delivers to the crowd and the patience that is given with certain notes so that each song is performed to perfection. As a huge fan of Puddle of Mudd, the struggles of this band and its members are no secret, which made this show special. If you were in the crowd or were lucky enough to witness HeadRushTV’s live Instagram feed, you were able to see that Puddle of Mudd was straight up having a great time while performing and allowing music to takeover and overcome any adversities. When you receive that version of Puddle of Mudd, it is guaranteed that they will leave you with an experience you will never forget.
Overall, each one of these bands are unique in their own way and combining them together leaves the Redemption Tour a tour to remember. Look at the links below and see if your city is fortunate enough to witness these admirable Rock talents!
Puddle of Mudd - puddleofmudd.com/
Saving Abel - www.songkick.com/artists/583314-saving-abel
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