Thursday, March 12, 2009

Slipknot at the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario

One of the more polarizing tours in the metal world descended on Ontario at the Citizens Bank Arena. Slipknot, Coheed & Cambria and Trivium brought metal to the Inland Empire on a Tuesday evening.

It was quite the trek out towards Ontario and Trivium hit the stage at a non-rocking time of 7:00pm precisely. This cancelled out the bonus of the free parking at the arena. I heard a small bit of Trivium and will have to refer you to the time I saw them at the Grove of Anaheim back in March of 2007.

Coheed & Cambria
When I referred to this tour as polarizing, you either love or despise the bands on the bill. Coheed & Cambria caused quite the stir on the Slipknot web forums as many folks didn't think Coheed was "metal" enough. Claudio Sanchez (Vocals/Guitars) looked and sounded metal enough to me with his white Gibson explorer and his stack of Mesa Boogie Amplifiers.

Coheed wisely chose their fastest and heaviest songs by opening with "Welcome Home" from the album Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Vol.1: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness. Claudio and his mop of hair whipped around for the unbridled guitar fury of "The Velourium Camper III: Al the Killer".

Regardless of whether you can take Claudio's high pitched vocal delivery, he definitely knows how to shred. Travis Stever (Guitars) was no slouch either working overtime on his Gibson Les Paul. Whether or not you like the songs, the musicianship of Coheed & Cambria is top notch. I am sure some of the Slipknot fans were pleased to see the giant tarp with the quote "God Will Not Save You".

Coheed & Cambria setlist for the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario
"Welcome Home"
"The Velourium Camper III: Al the Killer"
"No World for Tomorrow"
"The End Complete III: The End Complete"
"In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3"

Do you remember being handed cassettes when you exited various concerts back in the day? I don't remember which specific show I was at, but I do recall being intrigued by a cassette tape from a new band called Slipknot on Roadrunner records. The recording was also helmed by Ross Robinson who had helped Korn capture the earth rumbling sound of their seven string guitars.

I was floored by the cassette. Could they reproduce this madness live? I highly doubted it. Slipknot was the first band on stage for Ozzfest 1999 and I was blown away. I was lucky enough to see Slipknot at the Key Club in Hollywood in 1999 and it was absolute chaos. I would later see Slipknot at the Glass House in Pomona which was an equally disturbing show. Slipknot was a nine headed fire spitting hydra of heavy metal.

Fast forward ten years later, Slipknot is still filling the arenas and many of those who cast the band as a gimmick will have to answer to the legions of their fans who are endearingly titled "maggots". The crowd started to churn and grow restless. "Runnin' With The Devil" by Van Halen made a fitting choice for the warm up music to the band's entrance on the stage.

The red velvet curtain would eventually raise and I found myself in front of a menacing looking Jim Root (Guitars) with his custom Fender Telecaster. The sampled screams foreshadowed the blitzkrieg assault of "(Sic)". I was immediately transported back to the days of the Key Club/Glass House as I was inches away from the chaos on stage. I made it a point to try and capture all nine members of the band.

"Eyeless" stirred the crowd into a frenzy. The amount of crowd surfers started to outnumber the amount of security as I ended up getting kicked out of the photo pit during the pummeling riff of "Wait and Bleed". It was a visual and aural spectacle watching Shawn "Clown" Crahan rise into the air on his hydraulic drum riser.

Corey Taylor (Vocals)still has one of the more distinguishable voices in the world of metal and ripped through "Get This". Slipknot know how to give the fans their money's worth with a full on rock show. After a fourteen years in the game, it doesn't appear that Slipknot is slowing down anytime soon.

Slipknot setlist for the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario
"Wait and Bleed"
"Get This"
"Before I Forget"
"The Blister Exists"
"Dead Memories"
"Left Behind"
"Frail Limb Nursery"
"Everything Ends"
"Spit It Out"

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