Uproar in a downpour: Festival side-stage bands bring the thunder
Truly dedicated rock and metal fans gathered at Gexa Energy Pavilion for the Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival on Sunday. Not the ones who showed up for the headliners, though they were treated to a great show courtesy of Shinedown, Godsmack, Staind, and Adelitas Way. No, the hardcore fans showed up hours earlier, standing in rain ranging from a light drizzle to a moderate deluge to support the bands playing the Jagermeister and Ernie Ball stages. Despite the less-than-ideal weather, it’s doubtful that a single one of those fans regretted their decision.
Opening the show on the Jagermeister stage, the band listed on the schedule only as “Jager band” turned out to be Uncrowned from Atlanta, Georgia. Their set combined metal instrumentals with both clean vocals and screams, with an energy that let everyone know the weather would not be dragging the festival down.
Leading off the Ernie Ball stage was local Battle of the Bands winner Bow Prometheus. Seamlessly combining an overall deathcore sound with electronic sampling and keyboards, these guys showed that sometimes a popular vote can lead to good results. Playing songs from their “Treachery” EP, they brought a welcome harder edge to the lineup.
Shifting to the rock end of the scale, Within Reason, Mindset Evolution, Candlelight Red and Thousand Foot Krutch kept the show going strong. Sadly, Within Reason’s “Here Comes the Light” and Thousand Foot Krutch’s “Light Up the Sky” didn’t inspire a change to the weather. In retaliation, though, the refrain of “we have won” from Mindset Evolution’s “Relevant” seemed like a defiant cry against the rain. On a completely non-weather-related note, the award for the most unexpected cover of the festival has to go to Candlelight Red’s rendition of Roxette’s “The Look.”
The hip hop/rap-rock style of Deuce seemed a bit out of place among all the hard rock and metal acts, and the rally against the “haters” that led off the act suggests that others might have felt the same. Guitarist Jimmy Yuma deserves a lot of the credit for bridging the gap between the styles. Redlight King also showed some hip hop influence with their first song, “Comeback,” but the majority of their set was firmly back in hard rock territory.
Wrapping things up before the move to the main stage, side-stage “headliners” Fozzy and P.O.D. managed to also frighten the rain away with their thunderous sets. Fozzy focused heavily on their new album, “Sin and Bones.” They are a photographer’s dream band, with WWE star Chris Jericho and his bandmates all putting on dynamic performances. P.O.D. frontman Sonny Sandoval took advantage of the improved weather to do a bit of crowd surfing, at which point an overzealous fan took off with his shoe. Finishing the set with a mismatched spare, he and the band played their hits “Boom,” “Youth of the Nation” and “Alive,” along with a number of their deeper tracks.
After four and a half hours of rock, with little more than a minute between bands, the show moved to the main stage. Be sure to check out Kelly’s coverage and photos of that portion of the 2012 Uproar Festival.
Thousand Foot Krutch