A wet, wild revolution
03.05.2008A storm erupted Wednesday afternoon over the outdoor Ford Amphitheatre, soaking many of the fans seated in the uncovered lawn section of the venue. As an onstage DJ kept spinning tunes, the crowd, there to see the summer's much ballyhooed Projekt Revolution tour, featuring multiple acts, danced to thematic songs such as Rock You Like A Hurricane and Should I Stay Or Should I Go?. Would the show go on?
At that point, only one band, Less Than Jake, had performed.
Luckily, the thunder, lightning and rain ceased. The revolution was revved up again.
The tour's theme may not be clear. Its acts are a hodgepodge. But one thing's for certain, each act Wednesday stressed the importance of having a good time.
From Bert McCracken, lead singer of punky upstarts the Used, encouraging those in the crowd of 15,500 who brought best friends to embrace and kiss each other, to headliners Linkin Park using time between songs to gush props to the bill's other acts, to rapper Snoop Dogg, who had the crowd chanting his name and dancing, it was clear the revolution, for most, was about good vibes.
Save for grumpy old Korn. Not much has changed for lead singer Jonathan Davis and his four cohorts over the decade since the gothy nu-metal band emerged. Korn's music is still the same hybrid of menacing, angst-fueled lyrics, pummeling rhythms and splintery guitar lines.
Live, the Southern California band is energetic, with Davis, in a black kilt, spinning his long braids in circles, dragging out bagpipes, and dynamic drummer David Sylvaria getting hyperkinetic on his kit. Highlights of Korn's set included, ironically, cover songs. The band got loose and limber on a note-for-note rendition of the 1986 R&B jam Word Up by Cameo. Later, the band got the audience to stand and sing along to Pink Floyd's Another Brick In The Wall.
Snoop Dogg stole the show with a riotously funky set featuring his 10-member band the Snoopadelics. Snoop's stage set featured both a gigantic doghouse and a dangling bone above the stage. The rapper and his band beefed up the hits Snoop's Upside Ya Head and Gin and Juice with plenty of slap-happy bass, percussion and horn blasts.
Linkin Park closed the show with a busy set. The rap-rock band features both a lead singer, Chester Bennington, and emcee Mike Shinoda, rapping in a strong baritone while whiny-voiced Bennington sings of his ennui and a sense of alienation - an odd combination, but when it works, it's compelling. Fueled by skittering hip-hop beats, the duo galloped between the band's musicians and incited fans with call-and-response sessions. It was controlled chaos. It was perfect for a revolution of this kind.