Alpine Valley Music Theater
East Troy, WI
June 9, 2001
Story and Photos by Terry MayerOzzfest, were rules apply as easily mixing oil and water, rumbled into Alpine Valley Music Theater for their second stop on the hugely successful tour. A legion of devotees showed up to listen to the 12 1/2 hour non stop metal marathon last Saturday night. More than 35,000 fans lurched out of the dark trenches of their basements to show the world their tattooed bodies, multiple piercings and painted faces.
The all day sacrilege commenced at 10:30 AM. The lesser known acts were forced to start the "mourning" off on the right foot. The metal onslaught on all three stages would soon rip the ears off of every mosher in the pits.
Beautiful Creatures, Hatebreed and Non-Point were some of the early bands on the second stage. All of these bands will probably be forgotten before next years Ozzfest takes root. Their sets were completely devoid of any artistic merit. Just booming noise with cliche' metal mannerisms. The second stage didn't find it's high point until mid-afternoon when Otep, Union Underground and Mudvayne arrived. Otep was a pleasant surprise, their debut album Sevas Tra won't be out until next spring, so Ozzfest fans had an early opportunity to sample their brand of melodic metal. Mudvayne was preceded by a guy throwing buckets of simulated blood onto the crazed and over zealous fans as the disturbing and chaotic lyrics of lead singer Kud coursed through every ones veins.
The main stage came to life in the late afternoon. Most of the first few bands had only 20 to 30 minutes to do their business. Usually this is not enough time for a band to show it's true musical identity. The bands have to speed up the tempo and play only the favs without experimenting with alternate material. Papa Roach was the first heavy hitter up. Their debut album Infest that contained the big hit "Last Resort" caught fire and has fueled the bands' success. With ripping rhythms and caustic percussive undertones Papa Roachs' tunes have two layers which mold it's cold metal into reinforced steel.
Slipknot was up next. The band from Iowa, wear grotesque and filthy masks and each member is only referred to as a number. Their angst ridden lyrics and lifestyles strike a chord with many of todays disenfranchised metal heads. The music is another story though. Loud and infectious at first, the poundings drone on as the monochromatic sonic beats make you wish you had a couple of aspirin and some ear plugs hiding in your back pocket . Slipknot has grown little since their last appearance at Ozzfest. Their freaky parade might last a year or two longer but, very soon these freaks will be buried in the graveyard of anonymity
The ever controversial Marilyn Manson, who stole the Ozzfest karma from every other act in attendance, strutted out into a blinding fog, adorned with a feather helmet and a medieval corset. Looking like a perverted Valkyrie on vacation from the underworld, Manson beat the metal drum with rock n' roll abandon. As the straining chords of "Beautiful People" blasted forth, moshers and non moshers alike melded into a sea of sweating and swirling human pretzels. "Revolution" played to the fears of the many unsure and insecure in the audience.
Black Sabbath finished up the carnage. Why do acts have to rip people off by claiming that this is their last tour ever as Sabbath did two years ago? If your going to leave, than LEAVE and don't come back. Black Sabbath now is just a lame and pathetic self parody. Kinda of the hardcore equivalent to Spinal Tap, except Sabbath's not in on the joke yet. Ozzy shuffles around the stage like a man in his late 80s. Ozzy should just keep his name on next years event and stay off the stage and let some of the younger acts emerge in the limelight.
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