Live Review: Korn, Hollywood Undead, Asking Alexandria, and More – The Family Values Festival
Mon, 07 Oct 2013 09:52:03
"I see ladies dancing and big buff motherfuckers beating the shit out of each other," grinned Korn frontman Jonathan Davis as he surveyed the packed Family Values Festival. "It's a good fucking day!"
He encapsulated the entire evening in that one statement—"A good fucking day".
Korn, Hollywood Undead, Asking Alexandria, MGK, and Beware of Darkness resurrected Family Values at the 1st Bank Center in Broomfield, CO with a big bang. On the eve of The Paradigm Shift's release October 8, AXS TV broadcasted the show live, and it will be remembered as the most powerful Family Values in the storied brand's history. Korn played with a ferocity that's rarely matched in the 21st century. There was a feral, fiery, and focused intensity raging through the band's flawless eighteen-song set. That very feeling became palpable from the opening chords of "Blind".
After an ominous intro, the "Korn Kage" was unveiled with two floors full of diehards yelling along to the screech of Brian "Head" Welch and James "Munky" Shaffer's seven-string madness. As Davis roared, "Are you ready?", the entire venue turned into a Rocky Mountain-size mosh pit.
Life is Peachy classic "Twist" exorcised raw and real rage as Davis writhed brilliantly in tandem with Reggie "Fieldy" Arvizu's unmistakable bass slap and Ray Luzier's impeccable groove. "Falling Away From Me" kicked off with a much heavier distorted stomp from "Head" before that immortal intro seeped through the venue and into the darkest corners of everyone's minds.
The Paradigm Shift's "Love & Meth" conjured a new kind of intensity, irresistible yet invasive at all the right moments punctuated by the classic dual guitar snap of "Munky" and "Head" and one of Davis's biggest hooks. "Narcissistic Cannibal" got the ravers in the audience waving glow sticks and hippie-twerking, while Follow the Leader's "Dead Bodies Everywhere" incited a massive scream-a-long. With "Coming Undone", "Did My Time", and "Shoots and Ladders/Somebody Someone", driven by an eerie lead from "Head", it was anthem after anthem culminating in an entrancing rendition of "Never Never", one of the band's sexiest singles that sparked a lot of that aforementioned dancing.
"Here to Stay" and "Y'all Want a Single" hit with a pummeling sonic bitch-slap of epic proportions. One of the standouts remained The Paradigm Shift opener "Prey For Me". "Head" asked, "You guys want to hear a new song?"
The double seven-strings steamrolled forward as Davis's voice hit haunting and heavenly heights on the crooned bridge. "Munky" pulled off a mind-blowing solo during the "Another Brick in the Wall" cover, while "Get Up!", "Got the Life", and "Freak on a Leash" blasted Korn's dominance loud and clear from Denver to around the globe.
Setting the stage for one of Korn's most memorable gigs, Hollywood Undead delivered their own unforgettable show. "Undead" bled right into a thrash-y "Tendencies". J-Dog seamlessly swapped between guitar, bass, and vocals, embodying true musical diversity as some kind of sonic wizard.
Johnny 3 Tears delivered each line of "Been To Hell" with a gruff power and dark poetry, while Charlie Scene brought cheeky levity to "Dead Bite" and "Another Way Out". Danny sounded pristine on "Young" and "Hear Me Now" as Funny Man's raucous rhymes added real gusto along with Da Kurlzz's bombastic beats. "Everywhere I Go" and "We Are" got everyone chanting along as Hollywood Undead emerged victorious.
"On this floor, I want to see chaos," urged Asking Alexandria singer Danny Worsnop. "I want to see some Goddamn violence!"
He got what he wanted as he screamed the opening words of "Don't Pray For Me". Nearby the stage MGK screamed along in the audience with a big smirk—talk about Family Values. Asking Alexandria stalked the stage like uncaged animals bringing the party through a booze- and blood-soaked ride to hell and back. They got bodies moving during "Run Free" and a potent "Death of Me". Seeing them live solidifies their status as one of the most promising contenders for the heavy metal crown.
Before he enjoyed the rest of the show, MGK brought the party with a perfect set of his own. A cover of Limp Bizkit's "Rollin'" woke up all of Denver. If that didn't, when he asked to "open up the floor like Belladonna's asshole", that did. "Edge of Destruction" evinced his airtight mic skills and rapid-fire wordplay, while "Wild Boy" incited an uproar. The standout was "See My Tears", where his rapping cascaded between a swirling refrain. He captured the ethos of Family Values set forth by Ice Cube, Method Man, Redman, and so many more MCs back in the day.
The festivities commenced with the elegantly crafted excellent rock of Beware of Darkness. "Howl" and "Ghost Town" mirrored a Led Zeppelin-style willingness to break and bend boundaries, but the bluesy bombast of Beware of Darkness brilliantly remains their own. Watch out...
To quote Davis, it was "A good fucking day"...Not only are Family Values and Korn back and better than ever, rock music is.
Were you there?
Photos By: Corey Soria
See our review of The Paradigm Shift here!
See Korn, Hollywood Undead, and Asking Alexandria all talk Family Values here!
Watch the "Prey For Me" Track-By-Track here!
Watch the "Victimized" Track-By-Track here!
Watch the "Spike In My Veins" Track By Track here!
See what Slipknot, Hollywood Undead, Asking Alexandria, Skrillex, and more have to say about Korn here!
See our exclusive retrospective on Follow the Leader here!
See our first reaction to The Paradigm Shift here!
See the band's first interview together about The Paradigm Shift here!
See our review of Rock on the Range here!