One thing that makes this country so great is we get fantastic destination music festivals. Cochella, Bonaroo, Lollapalooza, Rock on the Range – all great festivals, don’t get me wrong, but what about a festival that caters to pure, unadulterated, metal?
That’s where the 16th annual New England Metal and Hardcore Festival drops the mic.
Three days of nothing but metal at the great Palladium in Worcester, MA. The show starts slaying on Thursday, April 17 through Saturday, April 19. This year we’ll be served with All That Remains, Behemoth, and Iced Earth as the main headliners.
But there’s so much more for the headbanger.
The line-up for Day One is:
All That Remains-Headlining
Obey The Brave
Rivers of Nihil
Years Since The Storm
Young and In The Way
Day One will serve as an unofficial homecoming for All That Remains, which on its on merit promises to be very exciting. But, there are two show stealers to catch here: Bleeding Through and Broken Hope.
It was last year that Bleeding Through announced their retirement, which makes this perhaps the sole reason to come to this festival. This will be, in fact, their very last show on the east coast. I personally haven’t seen Bleeding Through since 2006. So this will be it for sure. They recently came to Upstate Music Hall in Clifton Park, NY as part of the first leg of their retirement tour and I missed it. So those of you like me who missed that show should make plans to attend this one.
And the other show stopper of this line up is Broken Hope. This is truly an exciting time if you’re a huge death metal fan. Broken Hope (as far as I’m concerned) are one of the original top notch death metal bands along with Cannibal Corpse, Death, and Obituary. Broken Hope reunited last year after a decade-plus long hiatus and released the critically acclaimed album Omen of Disease.
Looking at Day Two we have:
The Acacia Strain
Colin of Arabia
Within The Ruins
Thy Art Is Murder
Fire and Ice
I Declare War
Fit For An Autopsy
Black Crown Initiate
This is a stellar line up. I would recommend bringing ear plugs because this will be loud, and relentless. I would expect to see a few casualties in the punch bowl to cause mayhem for venue security.
The show stoppers to catch on this day will be Behemoth – for sure – and White Chapel.
Behemoth, in recent years has been the poster boy for shock factor. It has been banned in certain parts of Europe for portraying a strong belief in the Anti-Christ. Also keep in mind frontman Nergal survived a cancer scare a few years ago, which postponed the band’s activities for a bit. Last year, metal fans were excited to see Behemoth’s scheduled participation in last year’s Rockstar Mayhemfest, only to have it lead to disappointment when, at the last minute, the band pulled out due to an injury to their drummer.
Behemoth has not toured North America in quite some time and now the east coast has been treated for a HEADLINGING appearance at New England Metal and Hardcore Fest.
White Chapel has been selling out clubs the past five years whenever they pass through.
They have sold out The Lost Horizon in Syracuse everytime. This is a high-in-demand band that does not come through often. They are pure evil, and simply phenomenal. Recently White Chapel succeeded in an indiegogo campaign. Fans donated more than $35,000 to aid in the funding for a new DVD release due out soon.
And finally closing the festival on Saturday is:
All Out War
Scars of Tomorrow
Alpha & Omega
Those Who Fear
The Last Ten Seconds of Life
Loyal To The Grave
Will To Die
This day is definitely different than the other two days. Iced Earth is WORSHIPPED in Europe and rarely passes through upstate New York. They have rocked concert goers over three different decades and have preserved a sound that harkens back to the hay-day of heavy metal.
In stark contrast, ReVamp has only been around a couple years and they just released their new album Wild Card, but they excite me nonetheless.
Frontwoman Floor Jansen has an INTOXICATING voice, and is absolutely beautiful. It will be a real treat to see her perform. Jansen is also the singer of Nightwish, which should give you an idea how talented this woman is.
My recommendation for this three-day fest? Get your tickets now. Book your hotel now. Pack plenty of boos, food, and get a good workout in before you leave, because it’s going to be a loud and crazy ride worth remembering.