Concert Review: Rockzilla Second Leg Tour
This is a review of the Rockzilla Second Leg Tour concert which was performed at the Main Street Armory on February 1st 2023 and is still currently ongoing!
The poster for the tour, with headliners Papa Roach and Falling in Reverse with openers Escape the Fate and special guests Hollywood Undead
On the first of February, I had the pleasure of witnessing a rock concert in which I knew all of the bands performing and I was hyped since I had pre-ordered the tickets before they sold out. Interestingly enough, the first show date was the concert I had tickets to, and so I could hardly contain my excitement! After having waited around an hour in the cold, I was able to get into the Main Street Armory right as Escape the Fate began their set and kicked off the show. Listed below are my thoughts about each band and how they performed that night, which altogether was an amazing and unforgettable experience.
Escape the Fate warmed up the crowd with some recognizable and fun songs such as H8 Myself, Gorgeous Nightmare, and One for the Money. The energy level that they created only got stronger as the concert went on, so they really did a great job of getting the crowd in the mood for a great show. While they may have been the least-known band out of the lineup, they've been around since 2004 and showed their audience that they could still put on a captivating performance, and they were received very well by the crowd. There was a somewhat funny hiccup in the performance where one of the bandmates asked for the crowd to form a "Wall of Death", a technique used by many heavy metal bands and is considered an extreme form of 'moshing', but since it was the start of the concert no one really made a move to split the crowd up so they could crash into each other. It was probably for the best anyways; with how crowded the room was someone was bound to end up in a bad situation. Nevertheless, Escape the Fate was a great choice to open the concert with and I'm glad they decided to put their all into their performance; it was obvious that they cared about putting on a good show and getting the crowd into good spirits.
Up next after Escape the Fate were the special guests of the tour: Hollywood Undead. Man, these guys know how to party, and immediately they had riled the crowd up into a frenzy. Songs like Coming in Hot, Everywhere I Go, and Undead had the entire venue singing the lyrics at the top of their lungs and everyone was moving to their signature rap-slash-rock-slash-metal beat like they were transfixed. The interesting mix of influences that formed their music style really resonated with both the younger and older crowd, and it only amplified the excitement and energy everyone was feeling. I think my favorite part of their set was when they allowed a fan to come up on stage, and they wound up choosing a ten-year-old from the crowd. They had him say a song title with an expletive in it and allowed him to stay up on the stage for the entire length of a song, which just goes to show you to be careful taking your kids to concerts: if you aren't okay with them experiencing stuff like this, it's best to let them wait until they're older. However, the kid seemed to be having a great time and even received something from the band, so no harm no foul.
The third band to perform, and the main reason I came to see the concert, was Falling in Reverse. I've been a fan of their music for years now, and their frontman Ronnie Radke is one of my favorite modern vocalists, period. So for me, this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I may be biased in saying so, but I was blown away. There were many popular tracks that they decided to perform, so I'll just name a few: I'm Not a Vampire, Zombified, Voices in My Head, and The Drug in Me Is You. I can't explain just how hard I was headbanging to every single song played, but the pain the next day told me it must have been a lot. One thing I can confidently say about Falling in Reverse is that they really know their aesthetic, and they have quite a unique sound pulling inspiration from classic emo and metalcore along with hip-hop, and even gothic undertones! Toward the end of their set, Falling in Reverse blessed the crowd with the first live performance of Watch the World Burn, which was a single that was released a day before the concert. Even through the complex rapping and wild guitar breakdowns, it was a flawless performance and it really spoke to the band's ability to juggle different musical styles and incorporate them seamlessly with each other. Like the bands that came before, Ronnie Radke was thanking the fans in between songs, mentioning the importance of a fanbase and how the band wouldn't have a career without them. In fact, all four bands showed humility and gratitude towards their fans, which just goes to show that rock artists and metalheads can be really nice and genuine people.
The final band that took the stage was Papa Roach, which in my opinion is the most recognizable band on this lineup. In fact, they are considered one of the forefathers of the nu-metal genre and have been around since 1993, so they've influenced many rock and metal bands over the years. Not only that, but their lead vocalist Jacoby Shaddix has collaborated with so many different artists over the years, that if you listen to any form of rock there's a good chance he'll be featured on an album of your favorite band. Their set list included Scars, Last Resort, Getting Away With Murder, and even a cover of Still D.R.E. that wound up being very entertaining. It was very clear that they were no strangers to putting on a good show, as even though they were the final act and you'd expect the crowd to have been worn out at this point, everyone was still going crazy for their music. In between songs, Jacoby talked about the importance of brotherhood and bonding through the darkness in life, and how important it was to be there for others who were struggling with mental illness. This message accompanied the songs in a fantastic way and allowed for the concert to end on a positive note.
Papa Roach hyping the crowd up, posted to the Main Street Armory. Photo Credit: Facebook User Kassandra Lee
Even with music that would be considered 'dark' or 'emo' there are still a lot of positive messages and feelings one can gain from listening to this style of music, and one word can perfectly sum up how the night felt for everyone: cathartic. To leave the outside world for a few hours and bask in great music and company is really what everyone hopes for out of a concert, and we were definitely spoiled with the Rockzilla Second Leg Tour. Leaving the concert, I may have been tired from all the moving around and 'dancing' (or what some would call flailing my limbs about like a madman) but I had never felt so alive. That's what good music can do for people, and that's why it's always a joy to witness a concert of any genre!