Although Paper Mill Island is located in the small town of Baldwinsville, outside of Syracuse, with practically no parking and a strict noise ordinance, apparently it doesn’t mean that it can’t be a great local destination for a kick ass rock show. 95X (WAQX) took the risk of holding an all day rock festival on Saturday, June 21 and combined it with entertaining wrestling matches from Central New York’s own 2CW to make this year’s 95X Fest one of the most memorable rock and metal experiences this summer in Upstate New York.
The stars aligned as the weather cooperated that day and the Town of Baldwinsville allowed the music to go on for thousands of people to enjoy themselves. Props to Joe D, dXn, and their promotions staff for running the entire gig smoothly. With the wrestling ring built at the opposite side of the island, there were some wrestling matches from 2CW going on between music sets. dXn had the guts to enter the ring and really put on a show for the crowd, including lots of beard pulling.
The lineup wasn’t spectacular, but every band delivered. Adelita’s Way was the sole headliner, followed by Vegas rockers Otherwise, the veterans Smile Empty Soul, along with Nothing More, who is hot on the rise, followed by Ume and Edisun. Local area bands Jeremiah’s Razor, How To Disappear Completely, and Cry To The Blind kicked off the show.
Every band was amazing, but the one band that really took it to a whole new level was Otherwise. Their stage presence and ability to deliver was completely unmatched; it was hard rock at its finest. Hands down, the band could have and should have been the sole headliner. 95X has this band at their disposal and I would imagine they will be back in Central New York again very soon.
Overall, the day was fun, the beer was cold, the bands kicked ass, the wrestling was over the top, and everyone seemed to have a really good time (I didn’t see any fights). I feel 95X still has their work cut out for them for future local shows, but this one was definitely in the right direction.