Rock Allegiance Tour

By Chip Tamplin

Published on Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Rock Allegiance tour has been working its way around the country, and Chip Tamplin had the chance to check it out. Check below for his review and photos from the show.

Drive A:

Two years ago these guys were on almost every single tour that I covered. Needless to say, I was getting sick of seeing them. After over a year off, I was amazed by how much I enjoyed them on this tour. Though their crowd response was lackluster due to the early start of their set, the guys played it up as much as they could and the crowd of maybe one hundred did their best to play along.

Vocalist and guitarist Bruno Mascolo did his best to portray the angst of a younger generation of punk kids, but I mostly found myself laughing at it. Still, the fact I enjoyed Drive A so much was a great sign of things to come.

Vocals: 9
Crowd Response: 6
Overall Sound: 9
Band Activity: 10
Overall Rating: 9

Set List:

1. Revolt
2. World in Shambles
3. Can’t Sleep it Off
4. Let’s Have a Wreck
5. Are You Blind

Crossfade:

I had the opportunity to see and cover Crossfade for the first time at this year’s edition of the Rock on the Range festival in Ohio this past May. I was so impressed by them then that they were one of my most anticipated bands of this tour. Unfortunately, they weren’t quite as good this time around. Perhaps they were, and I was just jaded by seeing them for the first time in May, but either way I just wasn’t that impressed by them. It wasn’t that they were bad, because they weren’t, they just didn’t have that…spark, that made them so impressive before.

Still, Crossfade on a bad day are still better than most bands on a good day. Vocalist and guitarist Ed Sloan has a boyish charm that few others can match and a relatively strong voice, though his voice cracked several times – noticeably – during their set. Overall, I was still pretty impressed with them and they certainly started building the crowd’s momentum up for the rest of the line up.

Vocals: 8.5
Crowd Response: 9
Overall Sound: 9
Band Activity: 8
Overall Rating: 8.5

Set List:

1. Drown You Out
2. Colors
3. Lay Me Down
4. Dead Memories
5. So Far Away
6. Killing Me Inside
7. Cold

P.O.D:

I also got to see California’s-own P.O.D. for the first time at Rock on the Range and unlike Crossfade I was incredibly disappointed by my first impression of them. I could never put my finger on exactly what bothered me about them then, but something did and it made me incredible hesitant for their set on this tour. Thankfully P.O.D. put all my worries to rest early with powerful renditions of “Boom” and “Set it Off” to start their set.

Vocalist Sonny Sandoval had a lot more energy on stage and the rest of the band accented his intensity well. Midway through their set, Sandoval led the crowd through a tear-jerking rendition of their smash hit “Youth of the Nation” in honor of the upcoming ten-year anniversary of the tragedies on 9/11. It was fitting since the album the track appeared on was released on that fateful day.

Ending their set with “Alive” and a short cover of “What I Got” by Sublime was a perfect way to end the set that I’d imagined myself getting the first time I saw them. I was so happy they were better for this show.

Vocals: 9
Crowd Response: 9
Overall Sound: 9
Band Activity: 9.5
Overall Rating: 9

Set List:

1. Boom
2. Set it Off
3. Roots in Stereo
4. Youth of the Nation
5. Southtown
6. Driven to Tears [The Police cover]
7. On Fire
8. Alive
9. What I Got [Sublime cover]

Puddle of Mudd:

Few bands have squandered their talents like Puddle of Mudd. Every time I’ve seen them it’s like their live shows have gotten worse and worse – but not today. In fact, this show was so far ahead of any of their others that I’d almost call it a fluke – but a great one. One of the biggest issues with their shows is vocalist Wes Scantlin and his struggles with drinking. I’m not sure if they’re worse when he’s sober or drunk, or what he was for this show, but whatever he was I hope he keeps it up.

Not only was he coherent, and legible but his voice also didn’t sound completely like nails on a chalkboard. He was running up and down the stage, jumping off the riser in the back and posing for the photographers. It was great to see the band playing like this.

Vocals: 9
Crowd Response: 9
Overall Sound: 9
Band Activity: 9.5
Overall Rating: 9

Set List:

1. Stoned
2. Psycho
3. Away From Me
4. Control
5. Gimme Shelter [The Rolling Stones cover]
6. Old Man [Neil Young cover]
7. Blurry
8. She Hates Me

Papa Roach:

The band most of the people in attendance came to see. Though the tour was co-headlining, Buckcherry has been doing most of the full headlining. Thankfully Papa Roach were still given a full headliner’s set. Behind spastic front man Jacoby Shaddix, Papa Roach are a force to be reckoned with. It’s hard to imagine any band still tries to play after Papa Roach. 99% of the time, the band who plays after Papa Roach is blown off the stage and this show was no exception.

Though I’ve seen them roughly eighteen times since 2005, I can’t remember a time when the band was quite this good. Sure, most times guitarist Jerry Horton and bassist Tobin Esperance aren’t too terribly animated on stage, but this time was a complete team effort. I’ve never seen the band more energized, which was especially considering it was the last tour in support of their live album (with five new studio tracks) Time for Annihilation.

With just Jacoby giving it 110% Papa Roach are better than most bands. When the entire band gets involved, it’s as close to perfection as you can get live. It totally rejuvenated by love for the band.

My only real complaint (and it’s a very minor one) was the set list. While I understand they were touring in support of Time for Annihilation, I wish they’d cut out 2/5 of those songs and added in some more old-school Roach songs like “Blood Brothers” or “Dead Cell” or even something off of LoveHateTragedy. Still, a very minor hiccup during an otherwise perfect show.

Vocals: 10
Crowd Response: 10
Overall Sound: 10
Band Activity: 10
Overall Rating: 10

Set List:

1. Getting Away With Murder
2. …To Be Loved
3. Between Angels and Insects
4. Forever
5. No Matter What
6. Kick in the Teeth
7. The Enemy
8. Lifeline
9. One Track Mind
10. Scars
11. Hollywood Whore
12. Last Resort

Buckcherry:

Anyone that knows me knows that I’ve never been too keen on Buckcherry. That style of rock and roll I’ve always felt was tiresome. Once “Crazy Bitch” came out my distaste for them grew exponentially. But after covering them twice I will say I don’t mind them that much, at least live.

Vocalist Josh Todd has a great deal of energy on stage and always makes their shows exciting. Guitarists Keith Nelson and Stevie D going “back-to-back” to play was great as well. All of the guys were relatively photogenic and played up their show for the photographers in the pit.

Overall it was another great live set from the band. Even though I won’t be listening to them in my spare time, I’m glad to see that I can respect them more musically and sit through their set without wanting to kill myself or those around me.

Vocals: 9
Crowd Response: 10
Overall Sound: 9.5
Band Activity: 10
Overall Rating: 9.5

Set List:

1. Dead
2. Rescue Me
3. All Night Long
4. Recovery
5. Everything
6. Out of Line
7. It’s a Party
8. Next 2 You
9. Lit Up
10. Sorry
11. Crazy Bitch

Photos (Bands Listed in Alphabetical Order):

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