Saturday, September 17th marked the first annual Revolution Rock Festival, which featured 16 heavy metal bands performing across two stages on the grounds of the Foxwoods Resort & Casino. The weather was perfect, a nice sunny seventy degrees and the color of the day was definitely black, as a sea of thousands of black t-shirts graced the scene. Each one representing a band that was performing that day or a band from the heavy metal archives, such as Iron Maiden or Metallica. This was a day for generations X, Y & Z to come together and celebrate the music that brings together fans of all ages enjoying a common thread of heavy metal music.
Two stages were set up across from each other on a huge parking lot as the program began promptly at noon with the opening band, Smashing Satellites. The bands flip-flopped between the Monster Energy Drink stage and the Bud Light stage as the music was in constant rotation. Rising metal bands like Twelve Foot Ninja, Kyng and Of Mice & Men traded fans with thrash metal legends Anthrax and modern powerhouses like Killswitch Engage and Sevendust. Most of the sets only lasted between 30 minutes and 45 minutes. The band Nothing More made a lasting impression by bringing out a musical contraption that allowed all of the members of the band to play a bass solo at the same time and all on the same instrument. Chicago trio, Chevelle made the most of their time, giving the audience of mix of new and older material that got many to bang their heads in unison.
As the sun was setting behind the Monster Energy Drink stage, Danish heavy metal band Volbeat took the stage, beginning with "The Devil's Bleeding Crown" from the band's latest album, "Seal The Deal & Let's Boogie." The crowd surfing went into overdrive with their thunderous delivery of "A Warrior's Call." To recover, lead singer Michael Poulsen got everyone to sing along to Johnny Cash's "Ring Of Fire." The devil horns were raised for "Dead But Rising," before finishing there hour-long set with "The Mirror And The Reaper."
Now, even though Avenged Sevenfold were the planned headliners of the Monster Energy Drink stage, Slayer, the elder statesmen of the festival, drew the biggest crowd of the evening. Their hour long set brought out many favorites including "Repentless" from their latest release of the same name and the chant along chorus of "Disciple." Guitarists Kerry King and Gary Holt would trade guitar solos as each poured all their energy into their set closers "Raining Blood," "Black Magic" and "Angel Of Death."
As soon as the final notes from Slayer rang from the speakers, church was in session over at the Bud Light stage as the Swedish heavy metal band Ghost B.C. formed from the smoke flowing from the stage. The six-piece band is unlike anything else in heavy metal music at this moment as each member wears a similar mask, except for lead singer, Papa Emeritus who paints his face as a skeleton. With only 45 minutes as their disposal, Ghost B.C. began with the premier performance of their newest single "Square Hammer." The band showcased their musical talents with a flurry of solos for the songs "Ritual" and "Cirice," as shouts of "Hail Satan" were heard during the song "Year Zero." They kept their heaviest metal song for the end as "Mummy Dust" got the crowd going, before the day was finished with an intense set from headliners Avenged Sevenfold.
Beginning their hour-long full set with "Nightmare," Avenged Sevenfold kept the energy going for the fans after almost 12 hours of non-stop heavy metal music. They were also the only band honored that day with a two-song encore that included the classic heavy metal anthems "Bat Country" and "Unholy Confessions." As the first Revolution Rock Festival drew to a close, 20,000 heavy metal fans were hoping that this becomes a yearly event. All who attended had to be pleased with the line-up of bands and the elite level of music delivered that day.