The third show of the annual Rockstar Energy Uproar Festival came through Darien Lake this past Sunday. With two stages and 8 bands playing, many feel that the festival didn’t measure up to other festivals that contain more bands and a few more stages perhaps. Well, I must say the bands that did play (well, minus Circa Survive) held their end of the bargain making it a worthwhile festival to attend.
One negative of the “mega” festivals is that sometimes with multiple stages and bands constantly going on one after another, there is no break for the fan to truly take in the actual experience itself. Fortunately, Uproar did provide that here. You can see every band and find time in between to check out a multitude of tents selling everything from jewelry to “Fu*k You Cancer” t-shirts.
New Politics started my day as I got there towards the end of Middle Class Rut. The 3-piece band from Denmark made a huge impression as they did everything but bring the kitchen sink (and a bass player). Soren Hansen ran out onto the speaker cabinet, which was going to fall over, but thanks to my and the security guards help, we pushed the cabinet back to the stage so he was able to join his band mates and start the first song. Lead singer David Boyd was a nut; break dancing and standing on his head at one point for the crowd. They are a cool new band to check out for sure.
The band I wanted to see the most was Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Duff McKagen’s new project titled Walking Papers. They have a new self- titled album out and the band featured cuts off of that. This is something totally different than Duff has ever done and if you’re into “different,” then check this out. You won’t be disappointed.
The main stage acts were up next but, I must say, what the hell was Circa Survive doing up there? Walking Papers or even New Politics would have been a better gamble. Anthony Green is a turn off as a lead singer and didn’t grab and keep the audience attention at all. His band didn’t do much to help him and the songs were similar in nature with little variety.
Coheed and Cambria were up next and led by guitarist vocalist Claudio Sanchez. Hot off their double album release late last year and early this year, the band focused on cuts off of those two discs. Trading leads with guitar player Travis Stever, the songs flowed smoothly and were delivered with fire and passion. If you’re into seeing big hair, there is none bigger and badder than Sanchez’.
Batting in the 2nd spot were Janes Addiction. I have mixed reviews about their performance. They sounded amazing for the songs they did play but it was because of the songs that were left out “Jane Says” and “Just Because,” that I was whole heartedly disappointed in not hearing. Lead vocalist, and all around eccentric, Perry Farrel was dynamite and charismatic throughout their short set. Guitarist Dave Navarro really kept in the low lighting and let his front man be just that. The aerialists that have accompanied the band the last 2 years still continue that duty with them.
The headliner Alice in Chains made the day all worthwhile in their hour and 25 minute set. Alice in Chains also just released a new studio album called “The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here” and 2 songs were played off of it, “Hollow” and “Voices.” Cantrell and guitar/vocalist William Duvall have hit their stride and now combined have amazing chemistry together on stage. This obviously includes their harmonies. Bassist Mike Inez and drummer Sean Kinney were that solid backbone to let Duvall and Cantrell shine. Duvall is a perfect fit as he doesn’t have to be late vocalist Layne Staley. He has created his own niche and with Cantrell’s tremendous harmonies and at times, lead vocals, it takes the pressure off of Duvall and he can become what he has become…an amazing talent and great addition to the Alice in Chains family!
Alice in Chains set list:
Check my Brain
Man in the Box
It Ain’t Like That
Love, Hate, Love
Down in a Hole
Jane’s Addiction set list:
Ain’t No Right
Ted, Just Admit It…
Been Caught Stealing
We would like to thank Kristine Ashton-Magnuson from ASHTON-MAGNUSON MEDIA for the credentials to cover the show.