Bands to see at Warped Tour/Mayhem Fest

Bands to see at Warped Tour/Mayhem Fest David Wissel ‘12 If you’re making the journey out to Riverbend to see either Mayhem Fest or Warped Tour this summer, you probably already have a good idea of the bands you’re going to want to see when you get there. Mayhem will be headlined by metal giants like Slipknot, Slayer and Motorhead. Conversely, Warped will be headlined by popular alternative rock acts such as Taking Back Sunday, Rise Against and All Time Low. Many will be flocking to the respective main stages of these tours to see bands like these, and there’s not necessarily anything bad about that. However, in between seeing bands such as these, you will most likely have an excess of free time in which you could check out other bands. Many people will know exactly what those bands are. But if you don’t, I would highly suggest checking out these: Asking Alexandria (Mayhem) – The boys from the United Kingdom have come a long way from being an obscure metalcore act from York to playing sold-out shows with Sebastian Bach of Skidrow and Guns ‘N Roses. A couple months ago, they even played two of their songs live on national television on the Jimmy Kimmel show. Their last album, Reckless and Relentless reached #9 on the Billboard 200 and sold 31,000 copies in its first week. Their first album, Stand Up and Scream, didn’t even pass #170 on the Billboard 200. This may not be impressive when taken out of context, but keep in mind they achieved this popularity without sacrificing their musical integrity. Although their songs are heavy and feature screaming, they still manage to be catchy. They didn’t have to turn their music into bubblegum pop or arena rock in order to get fans. Although they draw some inspiration from 80’s rock , their style is typical metalcore, with a mix of singing and screaming and a bit of euro-trance/techno thrown in. As much as I love Asking Alexandria, I will admit their songs feature way too many breakdowns and have some simplistic guitar parts. To this I can only say that some of the best music is simple (Green Day, The Beatles and Blink-182) and I don’t believe peoples musical tastes should be based on solely on complexity. ( Songs to check out: To the Stage, Closure, If YouCan’t Ride Two Horses at Once, You Should Get Out of the Circus.) The Devil Wears Prada (Mayhem) – Definitely not a band that fits in with the rest of the lineup at Mayhem, but I would have to say they are by far the most original and creative band there. They definitely shatter the boring “verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-chorus” convention that many bands at Mayhem follow. They also avoid many of the other clichés of metal, like playing guitar solos that are incoherent with the rest of the song. The band is primarily known for their energetic live performances, chaotic/unorthodox song structures and front man Mike Hranica’s vocal style. TDWP is also a Christian band and many of its members grew up in Cincinnati and were raised as Catholics. (Songs to check out: Born to Lose, Sassafras, Danger: Wildman ) Falling In Reverse (Warped)- The origins of this band can be traced back to the origins of the popular Post-Hardcore band, Escape the Fate. In 2008, then Vocalist Ronnie Radke was sentenced to prison for multiple run-ins with the law involving narcotics and battery and consequently was kicked out of the band. During his time with band, Radke wrote many of the bands most popular songs, such as Situations and Not Good Enough for Truth in Cliché. Both music videos of these songs have racked up an impressive 40 Million and 15 Million views respectively. During his time in prison, Radke completely kicked his drug habits and made a commitment to a drug-free lifestyle. He also wrote songs for his new band, Falling in Reverse, in prison. Upon his release in 2011, Radke officially formed the band. They soon released their first album, The Drug in Me is You and began touring. Their musical style mixes influences from 80’s glam rock, post-hardcore and pop-punk. (Songs to check out: Good Girls, Bad Guys, I’m Not a Vampire, Goodbye Graceful)