Big Ass & Bad Ass: Rock on the Range 2015

Lizzy's picture
Tuesday, May 19, 2015 - 8am

Photo previews from the ninth annual Rock on the Range. The three day hard rock music festival was held at Mapfre Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, from May 15th-17th. The daily lineups featured headline performances from Linkin Park, Judas Priest and Slipknot.

Highlights: Day 1

Mikey Carvajal of Islander at Carolina Rebellion 2015. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Islander

We were introduced to Islander on last year's Mayhem Fest, but they have since toured with Pop Evil, Papa Roach and Seether, among gaining support from other renowned names in the music community. The rap-rock/nu-metal band has a unique sound, and vocalist Mikey Carvajal is not afraid to jump in with the crowd!

Mikey Carvajal of Islander at Carolina Rebellion 2015. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

We Are Harlot

Last year's Rock on the Range was We Are Harlot's first ever live debut, and they returned for an encore this year. Danny Worsnop is showcasing his vocals in a completely different form than with his former band Asking Alexandria, but the new direction seems to fit perfectly.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

VAMPS

I knew very little about the Japanese rock band, but they definitely surprised me in a positive way. Hyde (vocals) had a very powerful set of pipes, while K.A.Z. (guitar) kept high energy and active presence, jumping around the stage throughout their set.

Mikey Carvajal of Islander at Carolina Rebellion 2015. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Apocalyptica

In 1993, Apocalyptica formed in Helsinki, Finland, as a Metallica tribute band. Twenty-three years later, they have sold over four million albums and cover every genre from classical to folk to metal. The group easily distinguished themselves with their untraditional member lineup consisting of three celloists.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Dillinger Escape Plan

This band went on tour last year opening up for Nine Inch Nails, and they were no less crazy at Rock on the Range than they were around Trent Reznor's influence. [name] (guitar) starts the set off with a leap from stage right while [name] (vocals) screams away while bouncing from one side of the stage to the next. If someone doesn't climb up an amp stack or hurt themselves during their set, then it's not a Dillinger Escape Plan show!

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Breaking Benjamin

Following a reformation after a four year hiatus, there was no denying that Breaking Benjamin was one of the biggest excitements of the weekend. Though they didn't have the most energetic stage presence, they still managed to pull one of the most riled up collective crowd of the weekend. Clearly the band's impact had not tarnished over the years, as fans sang along for "Until the End" and "The Diary of Jane," among countless other favorite singles. Breaking Benjamin also gave us a taste of Dark Before Dawn, their upcoming album to be released on June 23rd.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Falling in Reverse

You know it's going to be good when confetti canons burst and signal the entry of Ronnie Radke.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Marilyn Manson

There was still daylight ten minutes prior to Manson's 8:00pm set time, and whispers were going around about if he would delay or try to postpone until it got dark out. To our pleasant surprise, he showed up right on time, though you wouldn't have known without sound, thanks to the dense fog encompassing the stage. The shock-rockers opened with "Deep Six," the first single of their newest album The Pale Emperor. Other highlights included fan favorites and covers: "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)," "Personal Jesus," and "The Beautiful People."

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Slipknot

Slipknot delivered a solid 14 songs of face melting metal featuring their self-made masks, three drummers on risers that rose and spun in the air, plus a bedazzling display of pyro.

Others performances throughout the day included: Shaman's Harvest, Xfactor1, Highly Suspect, Dorothy, Danger Kids, Beartooth, Yelawolf and Hatebreed.

Highlights: Day 2

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Like A Storm

Like A storm quite literally brought the storm with their set. Not two minutes in when the bottom dropped out and drenched the crowd around the Ernie Ball stage!

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Sabaton

I have to say, this was one of the most satisfying sets of the entire weekend for me. I had the pleasure of seeing Sabaton last year, and had been telling everyone I knew not to miss their set. Thankfully, they surpassed expectations yet again, and by song two the crowd was cheering, "SAB-A-TON, SAB-A-TON!"

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Scott Weiland

A couple weeks prior to Rock on the Range, a video of Scott Weiland sounding and acting out of sorts during a live performance gained a lot of negative attention. There was plenty of buzz going around, curious to see how his set would go, and fortunately it turned out to be a giant step up from that video. While his motions made him seem entranced, he at least sounded more clear and in sync - then again, the bass was turned up so loud you could barely hear the vocals anyway.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

In This Moment

By the time we made it back over to the main stage, a large platform, risers and C02 machines had been arranged across the stage. In This Moment easily had the most theatrical set of the weekend (even topping Manson!), with numerous elaborate wardrobe changes throughout their set. The band has been met with some criticism over their 2014 album release Black Widow, but they've taken it in stride and still deliver an outstanding performance.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Papa Roach

Perhaps just our opinion, but we think Papa Roach is killing it recently! A 2015 kick off co-headline tour with Seether plus the release of their 8th studio album F.E.A.R. in January seems to have laid the bricks for a successful year. Their set consisted of many new songs, but of course wouldn't have been complete without the single that shot them to success, "Last Resort".

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Godsmack

The hard rockers headlined last year's Rockstar Uproar and are still out on tour and laying it all out on stage in support of their 2014 album release 1000hp. Though the band lacked their pyro loaded stage set up that we saw on the headlining tour, the light show still dazzled and Sully Erna's vocals were top notch. Per usual, Sully and drummer Shannon Larkin had their infamous "Batalla de los Tambores" (battle of the drums), impressing the crowd with a showcase of superior talents.

Other performances throughout the day included: Screaming For Silence, Novallo, Red Sun Rising, From Ashes to New, Tremonti, Saxon, Nonpoint, In Flames and The Devil Wears Prada.

Highlights: Day 3

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Art of Dying

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Otherwise

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Halestorm

Their eleven song set featured a blend of songs from their April album release Into the Wild Life and older favorites: "Freak Like Me," "I Get Off" and "I Miss the Misery." Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Motionless In White

Creepily masked bassist Devin "Ghost" Sola hit the stage with chainsaws running, literally, and the other members were equally bold as they donned pure white makeup with grungy black painted necks and arms and headbanged their way through the set.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Rise Against

Between vocalist Tim McIlrath, guitarist Zach Blair and bassist Joe Principe, there is no way to not be looking at the action. We're pretty sure their feet were in the air just as much as (if not more than) they were on the ground.

Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Linkin Park

Other performances throughout the day included: Unlocking the Truth, Santa Cruz, September Mourning, Marmozets, TPR, Crobot, Anthrax, Rival Sons and Periphery.

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