KoRn/Rob Zombie/Scar The Martyr
Never have I had to drive to Yakima, Washington for a show, although I would do it again for the right show. There was no way I was missing this one with Scar the Martyr, Rob motherfucking Zombie and KoRn! Taking the day off from work, we drove approximately 3 hours to reach our destination at the Yakima Sun Dome. Standing in line to get in, a warming temperature in the low 40s, I listened to the locals talk about the rock radio station there. They were the only locals I know of for sure at the show. Everyone else I talked to also traveled some hours to get here, whether they were coming from the Tri City area or Spokane. If you've never been to the Yakima Sun Dome let me tell you, it really has that old school feel to it. The look inside is like a huge high school gym with the same smell and floor. All that was missing really was the basketball hoops. The crowd was pretty evenly distributed between the Zombie fans and the KoRn freaks, both young and old. Also in attendance was Jesus! (And to those of you that attended the Lamb of God show in Portland, it was the same guy!) With the floor half full and some unoccupied seats in the stands, the lights flashed letting us know the show is about to start. The stage is simple with just a banner displaying Scar the Martyr name. As the guys take the stage, the crowd erupts with screams as soon as the unmasked Joey Jordison (Slipknot) takes the helm behind his drums. With a simple wave to the crowd, Joey starts quickly with a kick of the bass drum to start the show. In front of Joey is vocalist Henry Derek, guitarist Jed Simon (Strapping Young Lad), guitarist Kris Norris (Darkest Hour) and the keyboardist. This 6 piece definitely got the crowd excited, especially every time Joey raised his hand. The drums were the core of the sound but the talent in front was undeniably awesome. Henry's vocal range wowed the crowd with the guitar and bass complementing the sound just right. Their single "Soul Disintegration" received tremendous applause and approval from the crowd, this band will go far and not just because of the self made metal icon in the band but because of their sound. Scar the Martyr did end their set a little slow with some jamming and a pause for applause, then more jamming and a pause for applause to where it got to the point you were wondering if the song was over yet. Joey did throw out some sticks to some lucky sons-of-bitches in the crowd and with that the band members saluted the audience and exited off the stage. Next up was the legendary Rob Zombie. The back drop of the stage was banners with mug shots of classic horror monsters including a Frankenstein, werewolf, pig face man and Godzilla. The platforms had banners that read "Hate-Kill-War", "Love-Death-Sex", and "Suck-Die-Crush." Also adorning the stage were 3 monster like statues with gargoyle faces in a crucifix pose. By now, the floor is full and there are barely any empty seats in the bleachers which is pretty amazing considering its a Tuesday night. The intro music for the legends as they took the stage came from Zombie's new album Venomous Rat Regeneration Vendor titled "Theme for the Rat Vendor" followed by one of the albums singles "Teenage Nosferatu Pussy." Zombie then proceeds to tell us that he was told that he was too old to do back-to-back shows because he may throw his voice out, and he did. He only struggled a couple of times, other than that there is no way to keep a Zombie down. That guy may be 'old' but he has more energy than the people that sat next to me. Yes, people were sitting next to me. Who can sit down when Zombie is on the stage with John5? In true Zombie fashion, he wore his jacket with lots of fringe, patched up pants and a huge hat. John 5 and Piggy D had their masks on in the beginning but later took them off to reveal the face paint underneath. Zombie tells the crowd to sing-a-long on the next song which is a Grand Funk Railroad cover song of "We're an American Band" then moves into "More Human than Human." Let me tell you, Zombie has some awesome dance moves! At one point, Zombie sits down with John 5 on one of the platforms and asks the crowd what song they should play next. It was pretty much unanimous around me, everyone was screaming "Dragula", but apparently people up front were yelling things like "Slayer!" and "Metallica!" so in response to that, John 5 starts the guitar riff to Metallica's song "Sandman" to get the crowd going but then they end up doing the whole song beautifully! Right after that, Zombie jumps off the stage and heads up into the bleachers, cuts across and does the loop around the arena while John 5 kicks it into a killer guitar solo. It was pretty fun watching Zombie with about 5 security guards push their way around the crowd. Zombie ends their set with the classics of "Thunder Kiss '65" and the highly anticipated "Dragula." Amazing set and sound and the energy Zombie and the rest of the crew put out is over the top. Now for the other co-headliner, the almighty KoRn! The monster mug shots have now been replaced with a huge faded picture of a jail with parts of what looks like the remnants of the KoRn cage hanging in front. The drum set is placed high on a platform. There is a silence that comes over the crowd when the stage hand brings out Jonathan Davis' mic stand, we all know what we are in for and its going to kick ass. The intro music starts and first to the stage is Ray the drummer. Then as the rest of the pioneers of nu-metal take the stage, the audience goes crazy as they start off with the song that started it all, "Blind" followed by the catchy quick oldie "Twist." This is personally my 8th time seeing KoRn and I think this is the best vocally Jonathan Davis has sounded. He really showcased his range tonight and screamed more which made some songs sound even darker. Seeing Brian "Head" Welch back up on stage next to Fieldy was amazing. You could tell that each member was excited and relieved to have Head back its like he gave them all an energy boost. Head being back brings a sort of old school feel back to the band but the band is ever growing and exploring new sounds. They played their newest single off their latest album Paradigm Shift titled "Love and Meth" which sounded great. They followed up with "Dead Bodies" which is awesome live! Every once in a while, I would catch myself watching the interactions on stage. Fieldy would make his way over to Munky's side of the stage and they would jam then Fieldy and Head would play off each other. It is really refreshing to see that sort of brotherhood on stage. And if you stopped and payed attention to Ray, what talent!! Sometimes I would just watch him play and be in awe. I think his talent may be a little underestimated but he fits perfectly with KoRn! There were moments when your ear would tune into the bass and then you'd see Fieldy doing his thing with his style of bass playing. Again in awe. For a moment, everyone left the stage then you hear it. Bagpipes! Of course Jonathan Davis showcases his skills on the bagpipes, getting the crowd pumped up for "Shoots and Ladders." This was then followed up with one of my personal favorites, the dark and melodic "Here to Stay." By this time, my voice is getting tired from singing all the songs so far. KoRn then plays the first single off their latest album "Never Never" before heading off the stage to get ready for the encore. Their encore started off with one of the only songs they played from an album with out Head, "Get Up!" from Path of Totality. KoRn finishes the encore with the classics of "Got the Life" and "Freak on a Leash." The arena went crazy for these last two songs. These songs have probably meant something to every KoRn fan in the audience, helped them through some difficult time in their life. I can't put into words how amazing the energy is for a KoRn fan at a KoRn show. The band at the end of the set, after they have thrown out handfulls of picks and drum sticks, they all take the stage and bow to the audience, thanking them from a great show which in return, the audience yells and screams their approval. Love-em or hate-em one thing is for certain, KoRn knows how to put on a show. I like the fact that the playlist consisted of mostly old KoRn, although I was wondering how some songs would have sounded with Head now back adding his flare. All in all this concert was great! The Night of the Living 'Dread' although a cheesy title for a tour, was amazing and if you couldn't make the drive out to Yakima for the show, well hopefully these guys will come back around next year closer to you.