Rockstar Mayhem: More Rockstar Than Mayhem

Who: Slipknot, Slayer, Anthrax, Motorhead
Where: Darien Lake PAC
When: 8/1/12

It would really be hard to refer to what we got at Darien Lake last night as the Rockstar Mayhem festival. This bastardized version featured only four bands – Anthrax, Motorhead, Slayer and Slipknot, and while that’s not exactly a lineup to sneeze at, it didn’t feature even half of the billed bands currently touring the country with the Rockstar Mayhem festival, most notably for this reporter, the mighty As I Lay Dying. To be honest, there was definitely some novelty in seeing those first bands in action, and having never seen the trio of Anthrax, Motorhead and Slayer live; I guess it was a noteworthy show. But for me, and those with me, Slipknot was definitely the drawing point. Even though images of [Anthrax guitarist] Scott Ian’s beard (thankfully perfectly visible from our vantage point) and sounds of [Motorhead frontman] Lemmy’s legendary raspy howl probably were the things I’ll take away the most from this show, but as I said, Slipknot was the main drawing point for me. Slipknot truly is a band you’ll never get tired of seeing. I first saw them in Toronto on Ozzfest 2001 (anyone remember Ozzfest?), and have seen them a couple more times since then, and they never get old. The masks, the jumpsuits, and more importantly, the music – it just never tires. With the band having just released their greatest hits canon Antennas From Hell, I knew I was in a veritable who’s who of Slipknot cuts. And that’s what I got. “Wait and Bleed,” “Before I Forget,” “Eyeless,” “Surfacing” and “Psychosocial,” and the list goes on and on, almost literally, though the true highlight was “People=Shit,” which I was thinking they weren’t going to play. I don’t say this about many bands, but if ever there needed to be one band on your must-see live list, then Slipknot is it.