There are very few places in Asia can have an all-out MASSIVE metal festival. The few places that I can think of that has enough of a support base for it to be financially viable to bring in huge acts on the metal circuit are: Indonesia, Philippines and of course Japan.
Just this past year Japan has hosted some huge metal festivals including the annual Loud Park which celebrated its 10 year anniversary this year. But this year Japan also hosted the only Ozzfest to take place anywhere on this planet.
A good friend from Shanghai, Corey Zhao, got on a plane and flew over to witness this festival with his own eyes. I’ve asked him to help out and write a show review…little did I know that he would do such a great job writing it up! Reading through this I actually felt like I was there too 🙂
Well, even though I told myself no more Slipknot after I watched them 2 days in a row at last year’s Knotfest, I was still impressed when I saw the line up of this year’s Ozzfest 2015 which included: my favorite band Korn, Baby Metal who are on fire, Japanese metalcore Crystal Lake, Hatebreed, Evanescence, Jane’s Addiction. After seeing this lineup I knew this was definitely a trip I needed to take, no hesitation.
Korn’s Asia Tour has 3 stops and the first one was Taipei on 11/19. I watched my friends Facebook and wechat all the pictures they took with the band, my sick bastard friends flew all the way from mainland China to Taipei and I have to say I love them for their spirit. 2 thumbs up!
November 21 – First day of Ozzfest
I am so ready. I hit the venue before noon, Crystal Lake starts on 12pm, all kinds of circle pits, crowd surfing, I was absolutely one of them. The band just released their new album Sign, great record, I recommend to everyone. Most of the songs they played are from the new album so I did not get many chances to sing along which is okay.
After Crystal Lake was a local band called Meaning, I popped out and got in line at the merch table and waited 15 mins to get the new Crystal Lake record.
By the time I got back into the show it was Crossfaith, another local metalcore band who has made several trips to China already. I’m kinda familiar with them, great band too.
When SiM started, I could tell the crowd was heating up, people waving, jumping and singing along, especially when SiM invited Corey Taylor to sing a song with them. The audience lit up with screaming women everywhere, lol.
Corey Taylor who did not bring any band was the next artist. He did an acoustic consisting of Stone Sour songs. Not too bad but I cannot say it was very good, especially for a show like this, kinda boring in my humble opinion. The only splash was when he sang Snuff, yes a Slipknot song.
One Ok Rock was definitely the biggest local band of the night. Everybody was singing along except a 6′ 5″ tall idiot from Shanghai which was me. I was waiting for Bullet for My Valentine.
Finally it was their turn but Matt’s, the lead singer, guitar went silent for 10 seconds right in the first song. Something just wasn’t right with the sound but I couldn’t my finger on what it was. So it was definitely not their A game but it was alright.
Vamps, never heard of them but obviously they are big in Japan. I was standing far away but once the band finished I started to squeeze into the main hall while the crowd were running off to stage A to catch Evanescence. And yes I literally “squeezed” myself into the mosh pit because the next band up on stage B was Korn. All day I literally saw about 5000 people wearing Korn t-shirts that day, including myself, and all Korn merch sold out before 5pm. Japan LOVES this band! So it turned out I watched Evanescence from the side. I like Amy and I think she killed it.
This Tokyo concert was part of Korn’s 20 year anniversary tour so they set up the stage based on the first record Korn. When the first song Blind kicked in, the whole crowd went nuts! Guys started pushing forward and it was so intense in the mosh pit because there were TOOOOO many people in there. I learnt from last year that you do not have any space to bang your head at one of these types of events, let alone bounce. All you can do is allow yourself to be pushed by the crowed sideways and you try your best to push back.
Korn played a lot of songs from the first album, including Faget and Clown. When Ray finished his drum solo, we all knew they were going to come back out for an encore and play a few more songs which they did. The songs were Got the Life and Freak on the Leash. They ended the set under a cloud of confetti which of course went all over the place. It got stuck all over my neck and face because I had sweated like a dog.
Japan loves Korn so much that the band had to throw picks and drumsticks out to the audience 3 times! Everyone started to clap and yell “arigato” which means “thank you” in Japanese.
I was touched deeply by these crazy fans.
*Day 2 show review up in a few days