I had the opportunity to attend Sunday night of Epicenter, and those who were there will agree it was awesome. Last night was epic, prodigious, incredible. For lack of a better word, last night was sofa king amazing.
Yes it was way hot, I felt like punching the sun, but it was a small price to pay to get to see some amazing performances.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get there until 2pm because my rides car decided to overheat half way there.
We were stuck on the side of the freeway for about an hour, before it was safe to hurriedly drive to the nearest gas station to buy some radiator coolant. Today was my day, I wasn’t about to be stranded on the side of the road in 100+ degree weather. Back on the road.
Stop 2, almost there, but not yet. Car is out of gas. Why was this happening to me? Oh cool, 50 other people decided to pump gas at the same time as us. What’s that? The car overheated again? Awesome, fix it.
2:09 pm, we arrive at the Auto Club Speedway, hurray! I try to come up on VIP parking by saying i work at KROQ, nope, didn’t happen. I had to park 2 miles away and walk it just like everyone else, but it didn’t matter because we were finally here. We get in just in time to watch the [lastfm]Black Veil Brides[/lastfm] play their last couple of songs at the Monster stage. It was pretty cool this was the first time I have heard of them and they put on an awesome show, just so full of energy running around jumping, despite the heat.
Up next, [lastfm]Against Me[/lastfm], who opened with ‘I Was A Teenage Anarchist‘. This was the only song I knew of them thanks to RockBand, but with their performance of ‘Thrash Unreal‘ they won my heart. I was in there rocking with everyone else watching them. Amazing set by these guys, super good, super energy, my day was looking up.
Up next was [lastfm]Bad Religion[/lastfm], who I’ve been wanting to see ever since I was in high school. Dreams do come true. They made their way on stage to some very patriotic music, and as soon as they struck the first chord to their opening song ‘Do What You Want‘ there was a GIANT pit to my left and to my right. Awesome.
It was just non stop jams coming from these guys. In between songs, Greg reminded the fans that he had promised a new record later this year, and he didn’t lie, and then they bust into ‘The Devil in Stitches‘ and later ‘The Resist Stance‘. They played a pretty long set and by the time they got to my favorite song ‘Generator’ it was popping! Everyone singing a long, and if you weren’t singing you were in the pit, and if you weren’t in the pit, you were crowd surfing, and if you weren’t doing either, WHY NOT?
The cherry on top to Bad Religion‘s set was the fire hose soaking everyone.
[lastfm]30 Seconds To Mars[/lastfm] took the stage next, and Jared Leto did not give a fu*k! I’m not a big Thirty Seconds To Mars fan, but I’ve seen their music video for ‘Closer To The Edge‘ and it looked like they put on an amazing show, so this was a band I wanted to see as well, so I worked my way up closer to the stage.
This performance was very fan devoted with lots of interaction between Jared and the fans, cracking jokes, and even making some sexual innuendos with the giant fire hose.
For their last song, Jared invited the first 5 people to crowd surf to the front on stage; it ended up being over 50 people on stage, and they began playing ‘Kings & Queens‘ with all the people on stage singing and Jared going around mingling with them. It was awesome. I would have crowd surfed myself, but I didn’t want to lose my place so close to the stage.
The sun was setting, it was beginning to get fresh, and I was loving it. But that didn’t last too long, because just as [lastfm]Rise Against[/lastfm] hit the stage, everyone took about 5 steps forward, and I literally could not move in any direction, it was awesome.
Rise Against was awesome, just got the crowd going with giants pits, people jumping up and down, and people pumping their fists. It was too rock n roll, it doesn’t get more rock n roll than their performance, and the crowd, impossible.
Towards the end of their set, Tim busted out his acoustic and started serenading me with ‘Swing Life Away‘ and ‘Hero of War‘ it was magical. He had me at hello.
Their set was f**king sweet, playing all their great songs, ‘The Good Left Undone’, ‘Prayer of the Refugee’, ‘Blood To Bleed‘. By the end, there wasn’t anyone that was NOT soaked in sweat. It was literally like rocking out in a sauna, from people being so close together. A quit change of shirts and on to the main event, by this time I was right at the front, holding on to the gate, standing my ground. People trying to pull me back, move me to the side, not gonna happen. This is where my years of martial arts, college wrestling, and weight lifting came into play. I was not going anywhere.
The website said 9:20 pm, but [lastfm]Blink 182 [/lastfm]didn’t go on till about 10:30, didn’t matter. I was dehydrated, tired, battered and bruised, puked on, sweated on, elbowed, and I was even picked up by an ogre and used as a riot shield to push people away, but all that led up to me being at the front of the crowd just in time for Blink-1 f**king 82.
Like all their other shows, the black curtain went up, and now we played the wait game, and looked at the silhouettes in the curtain and try to tell which shadows was Mark, Tom, and Travis.
The curtain dropped like the ball on New Years just as they jumped into ‘Dumpweed‘. Hell broke loose, in and around me. The crowd swaying back and forth, I was literally doing the [lastfm]Micheal Jackson[/lastfm] dance from ‘Smooth Criminal” swaying side to side just riding it out. As usual, Blink was awesome, with their crude sense of humor in between songs. ‘Rock Show‘ started blasting and by this time everyone was jumping up and down singing, sweating, trying to take my place at the front but it wasn’t happening. Many songs in Blink said “Goodnight” and walked off stage and the curtain went back up. People were content with their performance and were heading towards the exists, but I’ve seen Blink before and I knew this only meant that [lastfm]Travis Barker [/lastfm]was about to fly all over the place and do his epic drum solo. I didn’t say anything I was happy to get some breathing room and some fresh air. By this time I had lost my friend in all the excitement, and I was totally swass and swalls.
Just like before, the curtain fell, and Travis was playing drums mid-air, super amazing as always. Then they played more songs!
They finished their last show ever this year with that one song, that one very well lyrically written song. It goes something like “expletive expletive expletive expletive expletive expletive,” yup that song with all those curse words, “Family Reunion.”
An awesome song to end the night, and after 9 hours of rocking out, it was time to call it a night, and to find my ride! Reunited, and treading back to the car, another challenge lay ahead of us, remembering where we parked.
At the end of the day, the best headliner was the heat. Even above Blink-182. Just kidding, all the bands KILLED IT! It was murder! After this long day of rock n roll, I could not wait to just pick a spot on the floor and sit down for a bit, and reminisce.