Korn Brings “The Path of Totality Tour” to the Midwest

The Rave – Milwaukee, WI

KORN The Rave Milwaukee Jonathan

Coming off of the first leg of their The Path of Totality tour, Korn issued a challenge to DJ’s everywhere; Remix ‘Get Up’ or ‘Narcissistic Cannibal’, be Korn’s favorite, win a spot to DJ a live show.  This challenge was met with mass response and one lucky artist, DJ Maximillian from Maryland, was the winner.  Korn’s February 25th Milwaukee stop on the second leg of their tour was the show DJ Maximillian was privileged to mix at – much to the crowd’s dissatisfaction.

KORN The Rave Milwaukee FieldyMaximillian made 2 critical mistakes.  The first, he began his set nearly twenty minutes late.  The crowd was already anxious for the show to begin and was getting restless.  Several persons stumbled around already half in the bag and security was cracking down on all the smokers in the crowd.  The second was the taunting Maximillian gave the crowd when they began to boo him.  Rather than take it in stride and joke it away, he encouraged the negative reaction and lost the crowd even further.  While his striking personality didn’t win him any fans, one must admit that he certainly had potential.  With heavy beats and fantasy filled mixes Maximillian could produce a great album, if he could just get his transitions to run smooth rather than jerking his listeners from one sequence into the next.

Maximillian aside, J Devil (Jonathan Davis) and good friend Sluggo worked the crowd back into a very satisfied frenzy, amping up mosh pits and prepping fans for the main act to come.  Every fan of Korn and electronic music should take the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the inner workings of J Devil.  J Devil’s sound is reminiscent of Take a Look in the Mirror meets electronic goodness with the recognizable sounds of Korn’s thick chords and heavy bass.

The tardiness seen in DJ Maximillian’s set continued on to be the poor habit of the evening with Korn pushing their set back nearly a half hour and then leaving a mostly lit stage to speak for itself for an additional five minutes before making an appearance.  However, once on the stage Jonathan Davis, Munky, Fieldy and drummer Ray Luzier delivered a high energy, bass pounding show that began as vibrations in your feet and built until it was reverberating through your eyes, as always.

KORN The Rave Milwaukee MunkeyOpening with early fan favorite ‘Predictable’, Jonathan Davis appeased to fans with gut wrenching emotion before quickly moving through classics on each album adding the new sounds of electro into the mix.  But the electro sound wasn’t the only new addition to Korn’s stage show.  An increased amount of strobe lighting and a very much missing vaporizer as is generally standard visible set equipment for Davis were definitely different this time around.  Perhaps the vocalist has finally got a handle on his lungs.  Given the number of dates behind the band on the first leg of this tour and the missing equipment going into the second leg, one can only hope.

After tearing through head-banging beloved singles and leaving no safe place to stand, Korn finished hard with ‘Blind’, yet another classic from their first self-titled album.  The band’s energy level never slipped and Jonathan Davis closed the show with a wide spread grin on his face that almost screamed ‘Thank you’.

Photos from KORN’s set at the Rave:

An Evening with Corey Taylor

Corey Taylor
An Evening with Corey Taylor
The Rave – Milwaukee, WI

An Evening with Corey Taylor Milwaukee

I’ve kept every ticket stub for every show I’ve ever attended since my first show at age 11.  Over the course of 14 years I’ve attended 48 concerts and 14 festivals.  Never, ever have I attended a show quite like the Corey Taylor acoustic tour aptly titled “A Evening with Corey Taylor”.

Corey is known for his deep lyrics, his soul bearing voice and his appreciation for honesty, whether those he’s being honest about appreciate it or not.  Recently he authored “Seven Deadly Sins” and has taken his book tour on the road, along with his acoustic guitar, his hilarious stories and a promise to his fans of “I won’t lie to you while I’m up here.”

Corey opened his set Wednesday night with a common topic while in Wisconsin, the cold.  And of course, getting old, and how differently the cold affects you when you’re old, and a man.  Stating that ‘they’ should “Give you a book when you’re like six about all these changes that are going to happen” like the dropping of the boys.

He went on to talk about the holidays and his friends attending Thanksgiving at his house several years ago when he proudly cooked his first turkey.  Corey worked the crowd into fits of laughter as he talked about each of his friends and expressed his frustrations as they continued to complain about their families until he lost his cool on them, prompting more laughter from fans as he acted out the evening.  On a more serious note he ended the topic with the statement that, “You may not love the family you’re with, but you’ll die for the family you find over the years.”  Personally, I’m all for Corey going on the road and doing just stand up, this man could give Dennis Leary a run for his money.

The show moved into a reading from Corey’s book.  At this point in the tour he had worked through the whole book and decided to read the ending to the crowd.  He shared with fans that the original idea of an audio book had been thrown out by the publishers.  When Corey shared this with fans at the time that he was writing the book, there was such an overwhelming response and amount of calls demanding the audio version be made that publishers brought it back on the table and confirmed the audio version would be made and read by Corey himself.  He thanked the fans for making it happen but expressed that he “Had no clue how boring THAT would be.”  The room was pin quiet while Corey read except for well placed applause to key moments or funny quips exciting more laughter from fans.

When the book closed the lights came up, with plenty of prompting, and Corey opened the floor for a little Q&A.  After explaining several times to fans the difference between a question, which he would answer, and a request, which he could not fulfill, the questions started flowing.  This is something that not a lot of fans have the opportunity to do, so I hope each and every person at each stop of this tour can truly appreciate the gift they are being given.

After a short potty break “Because in my old age my itty bitty bladder can’t hold as much”, Corey came back on stage, the lights went back down and he broke into song.  Opening with acoustic versions of “Snuff”, “Through the Glass”, “Vermillion part 2”, and a very funny remade version of “Spit It Out” Corey worked the crowd, still joking between songs and throwing out dedications to Slipknot’s late bassist and great friend Paul Gray whom Corey says he knows “Is still with me every time I get on stage.”

Overall this show was funny, with its dedications and in depth discussion of Paul Gray it was heartfelt and a little sappy, and in every way, was one of the best shows I’ve ever had the pleasure of attending.  If you’ve missed this show, I recommend you check out the dates and swing by a show if it comes near you again, this is once in a life time and a must not miss for any fan of Corey Taylor, Slipknot or Stone Sour alike.

A few interesting question and answers that were enjoyed by all whether getting a good laugh or nearly breaking tears:

Q: Do you (Slipknot) really sniff a dead Crow before every show?

Yup, this was confirmed, so the next time someone says it’s a rumor, you can say you heard it here.  Corey Taylor has confirmed that before each Des Moines show in their early days they would huddle and each sniff a dead Crow in a jar provided by Clown.  However, Corey has specified that it was only at the Safari shows in Des Moines and never on the road.  An interesting tidbit; The Crow is now a permanent stage piece at Safari having been cemented into the newest stage built in the club.

Q: What’s your guilty pleasure in terms of music?

The answer; Everything.  Corey informed the crowd that they need to listen to the preshow music at their shows, because it’s coming from his iPod.  So, what do I remember hearing while waiting?  ‘Ghostbusters’

Q: Who in the music business would you punch in the face if you could and why?

After a little thought Corey answered with Cher.  The why; “That’s where it all started.  All that auto tune bullshit.”

Q: What is your hand gesture from?

Corey launched into an explanation about watching Kung Fu theatre from the 80’s and decided to use the hand gesture that the Kung Fu Masters use when dismissing a student.  He states that he was stunned when people started doing it back to him.  He went on to say that he wonders how many people actually know what it means.

Q: When will another CD come out?

Corey has confirmed that Stone Sour is working on a new demo.  He says that it’s “Much darker than ‘Audio Synchrony’.  It’s like ‘The Wall’ meets ‘Dirt’ on steroids.”  As a side note Corey confirmed that Slipknot will also be on tour next summer.

Favorite quotes of the evening not already mentioned:

“It’s not a Stone Sour song asshole, cuz I wrote it for Slipknot!”

“Watching him (Slash) play is like watching someone who isn’t even trying but it’s still fucking great.”  Also on Slash “We’re on stage and I can’t even look at him, I’m standing there trying not to go fan boy.”

“That’s the Wisconsin I want to be inside!…Sorry, I just went somewhere way wrong.”

 Click on thumbnails to enlarge photos of Corey:



Wolfpac, Twiztid, Blaze on Tour with ICP

Big Hutch ICP Show The Rave

Big Hutch

Big Hutch, Blaze, Wolfpac, and Twiztid took the stage as openers for ICP up at the Rave in Milwaukee. Photos of each set is below. Need to see ICP photos? Check out the review and photos from the night here.

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Wolfpac ICP Show The Rave


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TWIZTID ICP Show the Rave


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Blaze ICP show The rave


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Insane Clown Posse at The Rave

Insane Clown Posse
The Rave – Milwaukee, WI

Insane Clown Posse The Rave Milwaukee

Amid chants of ‘Family’ and showers of Faygo lies a single music label.  Psychopathic Records has been called many things and is known for many reasons.  But fans of the label and its artists will tell you that nothing really beats an Insane Clown Posse (ICP) show.  This year’s American Psycho tour boasting a long awaited combination of ICP, Twiztid and Blaze, was nothing less than spectacular, as usual.

Unlike the normal annual Hallowicked week of shows, the American Psycho tour consisted of several weeks across the nation ending per usual in Detroit on Halloween with a single Hallowicked show.  While many fans were disappointed in the change, the actual selection in songs well made up for the drastic change on stage.  Rather than dark forests with smokey, shadowy surprises and selections solely from the Joker’s Cards centered around terror and the season like ‘Boogie Woogie Wu’, ‘Hokus Pokus’ and ‘Dead Pumpkins’, the American Psycho Tour brought back songs that haven’t been heard over the last few years and new favorites such as ‘Everybody Rize’ and ‘Miracles’.  The show also offered collabos with Twiztid, treating fans to ‘Juggalo Homies’ and ‘The Marsh Lagoon’.  While these collabos are a common occurrence in Detroit, they are a rare treat for fans in other areas of the Midwest.  The stage change featured massive red, white and blue ICP letters with a hatchet man on each side as well as a change in barrels and Psychopathic flags wrapped around side posts hat could be seen clearly even from the back of the crowd.

ICP opened their show atop red and white striped tricycles complete with shiny blue tassels, peddling a figure eight around 4 giant, flag painted barrels filled to the brim with Faygo bottles.  As the crowd erupted with screams of approval the lights came up and the show began, Mike E Clark spinning classic Dark Carnival songs and monsters of all sorts creeping forward.  Even Uncle Sam (or rather Uncle Sams) joined in the fun.

From the time Shaggy 2 Dope popped the top on the first bottle of Faygo the music took on a sticky sweetness and adrenaline started pumping.  Shortly after that bottle flew came the first Faygo ‘break’ bringing forward lines of jumpsuit wearing clowns with buckets overflowing with Faygo ready to launch out over the front row followed by confetti, feathers and streamers.

As the night wore on the fans worked up into a frenzy.  Encouraged by Shaggy and Violent J they sang out choruses, passed around Faygo bottles and even got a little jiggy when the stage filled up with mummies and monsters galore for ‘Zombie Slide’.  The group ended the show with a bang (Pow! Boom!); All of the monsters, clowns, VIPs and group members on stage emptying out pallet after pallet of Faygo and filling the air with streamers.  This song wears on and on repeating over and over until every last drop has been released and fans are convinced they’ve received all of their entertainment for the night and Psychopathic has given everything they can to their fans.  When the evening closes to an end there is so much to remember from a Psychopathic show.  But as you walk out the door few things will stick in your mind quite as strongly as the smell of Diet Faygo, the screams of ‘Family’, the terror of soda toting clowns, and the feeling of pure adrenaline pumping through your veins.

Most notable gear for the evening:  A group of painted leprechauns complete with felt hats emblazoned with hatchet man patches and long green beards.  Each was painted as a different member of Psychopathic groups.

“Glow girls” – I have no idea where all this stuff came from, but these girls were painted head to toe in black light paint and covered in hatchet man charms in their belly buttons, eyebrow rings, on the zippers of their skirts, on their shoes, hanging from their dreads.  They looked like glowing cover models for Psychopathics from Outer Space.

Most mimicked group member: Blaze.  After I thought I saw the 20th or so Blaze waltz right past me, I quit counting.  The fans have his paint and walk down, as well as his signature outfit, bandana and hat.  Now, if only they could find a way to make themselves 6’6″……

Most notable moment not many people actually noticed: Shaggy out-doing himself once again.  At one point during ‘Homies’ Shaggy launched a bottle that hit the center of the arched ceiling in the Ballroom.

Most accomplished crowd connecting moments: Madrox and Monoxide of Twiztid working with the crowd to achieve a hug consisting of the crowd essentially changing sides.

ICP running through ‘Dating Game’ including separate introductions of Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J, each working a Faygo bottle (most of which ends up over their heads on down their necks) and receiving defening screams from the Juggalettes (female fans).

Wolfpac running along the front of the barricades to give out hugs, handshakes and high fives as well as joining fans in the mosh pit after their set.

Click on the thumbnails of ICP to enlarge photos:

The Highs and Lows of Rockstar UPROAR

Rockstar UPROAR
First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
Tinley Park, IL

Avenged Sevenfold

Avenged Sevenfold

The 2011 Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Tour has come to prove that fans of rock will continue rock hell or, quite literally, high water.

While Uproar had some timing issues, such as gates opening nearly an hour late and already 3 songs into the first set, it was the rain that began minutes after the gate opened that defined the day.  Sweaters on and puddles filling up, fans of every act pounded through the water, the storm seeming to fuel their screams even more.  Surprisingly very few fans were seeking refuge in the Rockstar tent, most choosing instead to take their free drinks stage side where artists commented, “I’m right here with you.”



From the opening of Mindset Evolution through the teary finish of Sevendust, yes, I said teary, fans and bands alike gave their all to the outdoor festival.  Moving indoors Escape the Fate rallied the fans, preparing them for acts to come and getting the most response by far for Avenged Sevenfold, who seemed to be the crowd favorite for the evening.  The Miss Uproar 2011 contest brought back the very intoxicated Art of Dying frontman Jonny Hetherington accompanied by guitarist Greg Bradley to host with members of the remaining bands judging.  The crowd favorite earned the crown, a gulp of Jonny’s Jack and a handful of condoms presented by drummer Robert Ortiz with the promise of “For later, hopefully with me.”

When the lights went down in anticipation of Bullet For My Valentine, Seether, Three Days Grace and Avenged Sevenfold the cheers became louder and louder until they rivaled the opening chords themselves.  It may have been cold, it may have been wet, but the thunderous riot of fans, the echo of the drums, the screams of the singers and the lights of the stage, were more than enough to warm each and every person in attendance.

Three Days Grace

Three Days Grace

Best Band : Three Days Grace
Band to Skip : Hell or Highwater
Thing to change : VIP tents, these were scattered all over, but always empty despite all of the VIP wristbands floating around.  Refuge seekers were turned away, even though the tents were empty, it seemed like a waste.
Overall Experience : Wet, soggy, fantastic.  Full of energy and high spirits, a show to attend annually.

Standout Moments:

– Sevendust’s LaJon Witherspoon coming to tears as Disturbed frontman and “Good friend” David Draiman stood on stage to watch the performance.

– Adam Gotier of Three Days Grace asking “Can we have some fun?” and promptly beginning a very rocked out version of Eminem’s ‘Lose Yourself’ amid a very indecisive crowd.

– A defining roar of disapproval at the messages “Go Pack Go” and “Brewers Rule” texted across the Tinley Park Megascreen.  And the waves of ‘Awwww’ at the marriage and homecoming proposals that followed.

Check out photos from the entire day below:

Avenged Sevenfold
Bullet For My Valentine
Three Days Grace
Escape the Fate & Art of Dying


Sevendust at Rockstar UPROAR

Rockstar UPROAR
Tinley Park, IL

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In Photos: Art of Dying & Escape the Fate at Uproar

Art of Dying and Escape the Fate
First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre – Tinley Park, IL

Escape the Fate

Escape The Fate

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Art of Dying

Art of Dying

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Art of Dying

Bullets Fly at Uproar

Bullet For My Valentine
Rockstar UPROAR
First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre – Tinley Park, IL

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In Photos: Seether at Rockstar Uproar

First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre -Tinley Park, IL


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In Photos: Three Days Grace at Rockstar Uproar

Three Days Grace
First Midwest Bank  Amphitheatre – Tinley Park, IL

Three Days Grace
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