Finally some metal back on the site. I would love to get to more metal shows and will do my best but there are far less 13-show runs at MSG in the metal world so hitting a show is spotty. NIN and Ministry are on the list for later this year. This festival was a surprise (to me, they knew it was happening) but a welcome one which I’m glad to have attended. I brought a friend to her first metal show and had a chance to see Slayer for what will probably be the last time. The lineup (that I was interested in) was Testament, Anthrax, Slayer, Gojira, Marilyn Manson, and Rob Zombie.
On the riverbank in downtown Bangor, Maine is a new and contentious outdoor stage which usually hosts country and pop. The contentiousness centers on the large wooden fence that blocks a nice view of the river. It doesn’t help that the sound carries for many miles. I found cheap tickets on StubHub for the first and third days which means I would miss Gojira but it was unavoidable. My partner in crime the first night was Cat who had never been to a metal show. Dinner was food truck eats in the park across from the venue where we got to listen to Testament. Of the big four metal bands, they are number five and I had never seen them. Hearing it was enough and now I have to dive back into their catalog. We got in for Anthrax.
The staff was super friendly, the crowd over-indexed for camo clothing, the food looked expensive and the drink lines were immense. On the edge of the lawn near the food and pota-potties was a sponsored photo booth, a suicide prevention charity info table, and a vendor with clothes that prominently featured words like vagina and cunt. I asked about the Sunday show because it was scheduled from 5 pm to after 11 pm. No re-entry. That’s a great way to ensure I only come for the last two acts. One other complaint about this show, the schedule was released day of and was hard to find. The staff at the show had no idea who was playing when.
Anthrax and Lamb of God were great. I wouldn’t have been able to pick out any Lamb of God songs but they were good. The whole time though, all I thought about was seeing Slayer. Cat held my phone and wallet as I stretched in anticipation of the mosh pit. Here’s my next complaint. Security rolled in 3-deep and stopped any moshing that started. Such a buzz kill. Either way, Slayer was amazing and I’m sad their stopping but super grateful I’ve seen them as many times as I could.
Sunday night came and I brought my special lady. Not only was I excited to see Rob Zombie, I was excited to see John 5 again. Some people absolutely loved the Manson show. He was probably as stoned as Rob was but didn’t carry it well. For me, he was a mess and had low energy. Rob was amazing. He pulled out some David Lee Roth high kicks, had an amazing light and video show, strung together tons of hits, and wandered through the crowd during an epic John 5 solo. I would see him again any time.
All in, each act played short sets till Slayer and Rob Zombie. The crowd barely interacted with each other, the lack of moshing was sad, the volume was unnecessarily high, but the weather was great. Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson would be rained out in Long Island the next week.0 likes