Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Live review: Carolina Rebellion, Charlotte Motor Speedway (5/2-5/3/2015)

Posted By on Wed, May 6, 2015 at 12:15 PM

Carolina Rebellion
Rock City Campgrounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway
May 2-3, 2015


Carolina Rebellion celebrated its fifth year in existence with a sold-out, rocked-out weekend full of metal and mayhem. From performances on the smaller ReverbNation and Jaegermeister stages to the headliners on the main Carolina and Rebellion stages, the Rock City Campgrounds were bustling for nearly 12 hours each day. 

Here are my "awards" for the best and worst that Carolina Rebellion had to offer:



BEST TAIL - Islander
I'm not quite sure what the story is behind Islander guitarist J.R. Bareis' dinosaur tail, but it never seemed to hamper him during the band's energetic set.

click to enlarge Islander
  • Islander




BEST HAIR - Nonpoint
Because it's fun to watch people whip their dreads around like they just don't care.


click to enlarge Nonpoint
  • Nonpoint
click to enlarge Nonpoint
  • Nonpoint
click to enlarge Nonpoint
  • Nonpoint







BEST RECOVERY - Scott Weiland
Only days before Carolina Rebellion, video was released showing Scott Weiland in a less-than-sober state, struggling through the Stone Temple Pilots song "Vaseline." At Carolina Rebellion, however, Weiland showed more clarity and was later seen in the media compound doing interviews.

click to enlarge Scott Weiland and the Wildabouts
  • Scott Weiland and the Wildabouts



BEST DRESSED - In This Moment
In This Moment singer Maria Brink changed outfits after nearly every song. The band's theatric performance easily stood out.

click to enlarge In This Moment
  • In This Moment




BEST CHEESE - Jackyl
I didn't stick around to see if they whipped out the chainsaw for "Lumberjack," but Jackyl offered up some favorite rock cliches during its ReverbNation Stage set — Jesse James Dupree's bullwhip microphone, the bottle of whiskey, the 80s rock attitudes.

click to enlarge Jackyl
  • Jackyl




BEST PROPOSAL - Hollywood Undead
It was short and sweet when Hollywood Undead's J-Dog took off his mask and proposed to his girlfriend just a few songs into the band's set.

click to enlarge Hollywood Undead
  • Hollywood Undead




BEST CROWD - Breaking Benjamin
It's not often that a band's following grows exponentially while it's on hiatus, but the Carolina Rebellion crowd showed they missed Breaking Benjamin plenty in the last few years. The band drew one of the weekend's biggest and rowdiest crowds. 

click to enlarge Breaking Benjamin
  • Breaking Benjamin


BEST GUITAR - Cheap Trick's Rick Nielsen
His orange square guitar with cartoon versions of the band members was an instant classic — and one that he was happy to show off. 

click to enlarge img_9588.jpg


BEST QUOTE - Slayer's Tom Araya
"You must feel like you're looking at somebody's grandpa up here. Don't worry, one day you'll have a gray beard, too." 

click to enlarge img_9783.jpg


BEST AGING ROCKER - Sammy Hagar
There wasn't a single moment during the Sammy Hagar & The Circle set where you thought, "Clearly, that guy's 67 years old." Hagar tore up the stage — hitting the right notes, shredding guitar solos and clearly having a blast.

click to enlarge img_9879.jpg


BEST SCUBA GEAR - Starset
Wearing all black spandex suits and blue scuba masks, the members of Starset risked it all in the mid-day heat.

click to enlarge img_0346.jpg


WORST IMPRESSION OF BONNAROO - Ferris wheel
I fail to see the excitement of spending a good bit of time on a ferris wheel, missing performances and, perhaps, not being able to get off that thing when you want to. Seeing a guy moon the crowd below wasn't fun for anyone, either.

click to enlarge img_3667.jpg


BEST MIC STAND - Lola Black
A giant pair of brass knuckles. She wins.

click to enlarge img_3611.jpg


WORST MIC STAND - Testament
1985 called and wants its short mic stand back. Testament singer Chuck Billy spent a good portion of the band's set playing air guitar on it, too, which didn't help.

click to enlarge img_0434.jpg


BEST COLOR IN A SEA OF BLACK - Stars in Stereo
In the midst of a sea of black - see the majority of the photos above - Stars in Stereo singer Becca Hollcraft was a beacon of light with her green hair and shiny blue dress.

click to enlarge img_8879.jpg


BEST IMPRESSION OF STEVEN TYLER - We Are Harlot
Dude, there are few people who can pull off that many scarves on their mic stand and you're not one of them.

click to enlarge img_3843.jpg

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