This past Wednesday, Syracuse's KROCK held their 21st K-Rockathon festival at the Lakeview Amphitheater. This year's festival featured Korn, Stone Sour, Skillet, Yelawolf, Ded, Red Sun Rising and local radio contest winner Glen Street.
In addition to this being the annual KROCK music festival, it was also the first date of Korn's "The Serenity of Summer Tour" featuring Stone Sour, Skillet and Ded (there were previous dates featuring Stone Sour). The lineup this evening provided dose after dose of hard rock and metal from 5pm straight through the close of the evening around 11:15pm.
Kicking off the day were local radio contest winners Glen Street. They had the shortest set of the evening, taking advantage of each and every one of their fifteen minutes on stage. No doubt they had their hometown crowd in attendance, as they put on a brief but entertaining set. They were quickly followed by Red Sun Rising, who also showed up to with an exciting set of hard rock tunes. Those in attendance were more than warmed up at this point, facing temperatures in the mid-80's.
Mike Protich of Red Sun Rising at K-Rockathon 2017
Following Red Sun Rising were Ded. They appeared on stage, the entire band (aside from vocalist Joe Cotela) in white contacts. This was an eerie site, but definitely helped serve the purpose of making the band members appear to be dead, or at least some kind of zombies. That masquerade was quickly abandoned as this group was very much alive on stage, pumping a nu-metal sound that falls right in line with classic Korn.
After Ded's set competed, the stage quickly changed over to reveal the front of a car, adorned with the skull of a bison as DJ Klever started mixing. Shortly after, Yelawolf hit the stage to bring the crowd a fired-up set of hard-core rap and rock. Yelawolf's set probably stood out in a "one of these is not like the others" kind of way, but was all welcome just the same. They did a great job keeping the crowd engaged and provided a bit of diversity among a long list of hard rock acts for the day.
Yelawolf performing at K-Rockathon 2017
As the evening began to settle in, the biggest acts of the night were all that remained, as Skillet next took the stage. They entered with "Feel Invincible" from their latest album, 'Unleashed.' While it was obvious that there was a large crowd present specifically to see Skillet, there were plenty of people who had never seen them before, as well. This band takes the stage unlike almost any other act, exploding like a firecracker and never slowing down. The chemistry between Korey and John Cooper on stage is both charming and ferocious. Skillet continued to play through a short but power-packed set of hits including "Sick of It," "Awake and Alive," "Hero," and "Monster." Certainly a long enough set to give those in attendance a good dose of what the buzz is all about, but not nearly enough for their biggest of fans. Hopefully, another headlining tour isn't too far off.
Korey Cooper of Skillet brings a high energy set to K-Rockathon 2017
As the sun was setting, Corey Taylor and Stone Sour took to the stage to lead off their set with "Taipei Person/Allah Tea" (say it out loud), the lead track off their latest album 'Hydrograd.' Unsurprisingly, Taylor brings the same level of excitement to the stage as he does during a Slipknot show. During the third song of the night, Taylor went out into the crowd and sang most of "Say You'll Haunt Me" from a railing out in the audience (pictured at top). He returned to the stage and powered through some of Stone Sour's biggest hits including "Made of Scars," "30/30-150," "Through Glass," and the new hit "Song #3." Taylor has a way of captivating his audience like few bands do. Not only is the energy high from the start, but the entire band is genuinely having fun on stage.
Corey Taylor of Stone Sour ripping through a blistering set
Finally, after hours of hard rock and heat, K-Rockathon 2017 headliners Korn took the stage. They kicked their 90 minute set off with "Rotting in Vain" off their latest release 'The Serenity of Suffering.' From there, they went straight into "Falling Away From Me" and proceeded through what ulimately amounted to a greatest hits set, heavily drawing from Korn's first three albums. It's hard to believe this is a band that's been touring for almost 25 years and now sits with a catalog of a dozen studio albums. Every member of the band has grown into their individual characters over the years, so much so, that watching them perform brings back an incredible sense of nostalgia. Given the raw energy that have to pack into their set each night, it's impressive that they've been able to stay so active and continue to build their fan-base to such a heightened level. Throughout their set, Korn featured classics including "Shoots and Ladders," "Got the Life," "Make Me Bad," "Blind," and ultimately closed with "Freak on a Leash."
Korn's Jonathan Davis closes out K-Rockathon 2017
K-Rockathon 2017 Slideshow