It seems like just yesterday when summers were filled with touring festivals such as Mayhem Fest, Uproar and Warped Tour. Unfortunately, the days of head banging all day long at your local amphitheater are pretty much over. Luckily, Slipknot decided that this year they would bring their very own Knotfest on the road alongside some of their closest friends.
Traveling across North America, hitting 29 cities, Slipknot, along with Volbeat, Gojira and Behemoth, set out to fill the void. On August 25, the Knotfest Roadshow made a stop at Darien Lake to see what the Buffalo area had to offer. Once a common summer destination for traveling festivals, Darien was a no brainer of a stop. Fans gathered early for the show, which included a traveling Slipknot Museum for VIP ticket holders. The museum was filled with gear and props that the band has used since the very beginning of their career. This was a must see for any dedicated Slipknot fan at the show.
Once gates opened and all of the VIP activities were concluded, Behemoth were the first to take the stage. Typically, an opening band at a show with such a big lineup has a hard time drawing a big crowd and having any fan interaction. This was not the case for Behemoth, who had a massive response from the already jam packed amphitheater. This was not the set to miss, as Nergal, Behemoth frontman, and the rest of the band brought their biggest production yet to the United States. The band’s extreme metal sound mixed with endless pyro blasts and costume changes was the perfect way to start the show.
no images were found
Next up, all the way from France was, Gojira. The band, who’s no stranger to the spotlight, immediately stepped up to raise the bar even higher. The momentum that Gojira has had since the 2006 release of Magma, has made them unstoppable. The group, who’s made up of singer/guitarist Joe Duplantier and his brother Mario on drums, plus guitarist Christian Andreu and bassist Jean-Michael Labadie create some monstrous jams. There’s not a single band in the world that sounds like Gojira and that’s what makes them the perfect addition to the Knotfest Roadshow. This was a perfect pairing for Slipknot fans this summer and it certainly showed at Darien Lake.
no images were found
If there was one band on the bill that didn’t “fit in”, it was Volbeat. Even though they may not have the heavy sound that they used to, Volbeat certainly controlled the crowd like it was a show of their own. Frontman, Michael Poulsen, did a great job of interacting with the crowd and making sure everyone was having a good time. Their setlist was composed of new material from their recent release, Rewind, Replay Rebound, along with all the old classics. The fan support for Volbeat was more than expected with a lineup that included 3 other bands in an entire different genre of music. Volbeat finished their show with “Still Counting,” which had everyone singing along, preparing them for the final act of the night.
With the house lights dimmed and a giant Slipknot curtain was drawn across the stage, everybody knew it was time for the chaos to begin. Slipknot started things off with, “People=Shit” and that set the tone for the rest of the night. The band who’d been doormat for the last few years, while Corey Taylor was busy with Stone Sour, showed no signs of rust. After releasing their brand new album, We Are Not Your Kind, Slipknot is on top of the music world. Hitting number one on the charts in the United States and the UK, the guys from Iowa proved once and for all rock is not dead.
Although the album has only been out a few weeks, Slipknot was not afraid to play a few of their new songs. Those songs included, “Solway Firth” and “Unsainted.” Also making the setlist was the track Slipknot released last Halloween, “All Out Life.” The rest of the setlist on the Knotfest Roadshow tour has been fairly steady without any changes. That was the case up until the show before Darien Lake, where the group decided to swap out “Custer” for “Wait and Bleed.” Corey Taylor, addressed the crowd and told them about the change they just made and asked for fans help singing that classic. The crowd erupted upon the start of that song and the atmosphere stayed the same for the last 5 songs.
The production on this tour for Slipknot was brand new to go along with the new album. Each member sported a white costume and some members had new masks. Newest addition to the band, “Tortilla Man,” who got his nickname from his mask, meshed in with the other 8 guys extremely well and fit the vibe perfectly. Around the 9 members, was a two-story setup that featured treadmills and all the pyro you could imagine. The hardest part of a Slipknot show is trying to absorb everything that is happening at a single time. With 9 members on stage, some who are absolutely wild, like Corey, Sid and Clown, fans have their work cut out for them.
Slipknot ended with a 3 song combo that hits harder than any other 3 songs in the world: “Duality,” “Spit It Out,” and “Surfacing.” This is when Clown busted out the baseball bat that was set on fire to smash his kegs. Corey had the entire crowd get down during “Spit It Out,” which is the moment everyone looks forward to in a Slipknot show. The madness ended with the band’s “nation anthem,” “Surfacing,” which left Darien Lake screaming for more.
The Knotfest Roadshow is definitely what metal fans needed this summer. This is only the beginning of the “We Are Not Your Kind” tour cycle, so there’s plenty more to come. Slipknot, is a well oiled machine at this point in their career, only seemingly to get better with age and show no signs of stopping. With their album hitting #1 in numerous countries, the only questions to really ask are, “When will Slipknot be back again?” and “What other new songs will be on the setlist next?” Hopefully, other fans agree that “Orphan,” “Birth Of The Cruel,” and “Nero Forte,” should make their way to the setlist very soon. Even though it will be difficult to cut out old tracks from the show, it would certainly be worth it.
Before I Forget
The Heretic Anthem
The Devil in I
Wait and Bleed
All Out Life
Spit it Out