Welcome to Rockville 2016

Lizzy's picture
Saturday, April 30, 2016 - 8am

Welcome to Rockville celebrated its sixth annual year in Jacksonville, FL over the weekend of April 30th and May 1st. The festival sold out for a third year in a row, drawing in a crowd of 50000 fans - doubling attendance since 2013. Featured headline performances included Rob Zombie, Disturbed, Five Finger Death Punch and Shinedown - along with performances from over 40+ additional bands.

Day 1 Highlights

Day 1 of Rockville kicked off just before noon on Saturday and flew by with numerous short sets from Big Jesus, Cane Hill, Lacey Sturm (former Flyleaf vocalist), Monster Truck, Miss May I, Wilson, Filter and Red Sun Rising playing across four stages spread out over the scenic Metropolitan Park along St. Johns River.

Matt Heafy of Trivium at Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Trivium

Trivium lit up the main Monster "Righty" stage around 3:00pm. The Orlando natives are out on tour supporting their late 2015 album release Silence in the Snow, and their set consisted of numerous songs from the release including their latest single "Until The World Goes Cold".

Ben Bruce of Asking Alexandria at Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Asking Alexandria

Since parting ways with original vocalist Danny Worsnop in 2015, Asking Alexandria has returned with a vengeance. Denis Stoff has filled in with a powerful voice and energy that has brought a breath of new life to the band.

Michael

Bullet For My Valentine

So far, the Welsh metal band has spent 2016 traveling across North America on a continued run of their Venom tour. They underwent a change in bassists last year, but Jamie Mathias seems to maintain a great onstage chemistry with vocalist Matt Tuck and guitarist "Padge" Paget (seen with his crazy eyed expression here).

Christian Brady of Hellyeah at Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Hellyeah

The heavy metal supergroup (consisting of Mudvayne vocalist Chad Gray, Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul and Nothingface guitarist Tom Maxwell) only improve with time. Though most of their set consisted of familiar favorites from the 2014 release Blood for Blood, Hellyeah just announced that their fifth studio album Unden!able is slated for release later this year.

Nikki Sixx and DJ Ashba share a moment together during Sixx:A.M.'s set at Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Sixx:A.M.

With Motley Crue calling an end to their touring career last year, it was no surprised to see Nikki Sixx's second project brought into the spotlight. Sixx:A.M.'s set wouldn't have been complete without their well known singles "Life Is Beautiful" and "Lies of the Beautiful People", but we also got to hear a taste of the latest single "Rise" from their new album Prayers For The Damned, Vol. 1 that dropped the very next day.

Oli Sykes during Bring Me The Horizon's sunset set at Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Bring Me The Horizon

The British metalcore group released their fifth studio album That's The Spirit last September and have done nothing but take over the charts with singles "Drown," "Happy Song," and "Throne" since then.

3 Doors Down headlined the Metropolitan Stage on Day 1 of Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

3 Doors Down

3 Doors Down closed out the Metropolitan side stage at 7:45pm on Day 1. They are out on the heels of their sixth studio album Us And The Night, released in March this year, though they made sure to cater their set to some of the old school fans with hit singles "Loser" and "Kryptonite".

Disturbed in a midair jump during their set at Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Disturbed

Awakening from a long four year hiatus, Disturbed has been taking over as the headliner on numerous festivals and tours this year already. They've returned with a vengeance, commanding the stage with beautiful lights, jumps and pyro. Not to mention, David Draiman's insane display of vocal skills on the newly renowned cover of "Sound of Silence".

Brent Smith and Zach Myers were all energy and smiles as they closed out Day 1 of Welcome to Rockville 2016. Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Shinedown

There's no questioning why Shinedown keeps returning as a festival headliner every other year. The class act expanded their discography to include a fifth studio album Threat to Survival last year, but they continue to claim top five spots on the charts with every single released.

Others performances throughout the day included: Enter Shikari, Crown The Empire, Candlebox, Pop Evil, Pennywise and Collective Soul.

Day 2 Highlights

Day 2 of Rockville started off hotter and heavier than Day 1 from the get go. Texas Hippie Coalition, The Glorious Sons and From Ashes To New were among the first bands to hit the stages.

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Avatar

Swedish metal band Avatar came rolling into the US from Gothenburg out on tour as support for Sevendust and Lacuna Coil back in 2013, and fortunately have made repeated returns ever since. With vocalist Johannes Eckerstrom covered in exotic makeup and each member looking like they just ran away from a carnival, Avatar is worth watching for their stage presence alone.

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Sick Puppies

One of the unfortunate side effects of huge festival line ups is occasionally having to pick between two bands with overlapping set times. While Beartooth undoubtedly rocked the socks off the River side stage, Sick Puppies graced the Monster "Righty" main stage. Original lead singer Shimon Moore was shockingly fired from the band in late 2014, and there was very little information released until replacement vocalist Bryan Scott was announced in February this year. Bryan sounds impressively similar to Shimon's original vocals, but the radiant Emma Anzai still steals the spotlight as the most energetic member on stage!

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Sevendust

Their tenth studio album Kill The Flaw was released in October, last year, and they are back in action with the same intensity and emotion as always.

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Parkway Drive

There's always one band on a lineup that unexpectedly blows everyone away - Parkway Drive easily stole that trophy. The band released their fifth studio album Ire last September and had one of the most intense side stage crowds the weekend saw. With songs such as "Vice Grip" and "Destroyer", crowd surfing and mosh pits were no surprise!

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Lamb Of God

These guys are the type that you see photos of and just know you want to see them. Vocalist Randy Blythe is a powerhouse, jumping across the stage, flinging his dreads and spraying water everywhere.

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Megadeth

What new can be said about a band that's been around for more than 30 years? Dave Mustaine's voice hasn't changed a bit since their first album release Killing Is My Business... and Business Is Good! in 1985!

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

A Day To Remember

Pop punk meeting metal moshing has never been so perfect. Though there hasn't been an official announcement on a new album, fans were treated to a live performance of the latest A Day To Remember single, "Paranoia".

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Five Finger Death Punch

Despite being in the public spotlight over a lawsuit with their record label, Five Finger Death Punch appeared to be maintaining a positive attitude toward their fans and the situation. Bassist Chris Kael and guitarist Jason Hook liberally tossed guitar picks into the crowd while Zoltan Bathory flashed an endless smile. Vocalist Ivan Moody made sure to reassure fans that they weren't going anywhere, despite what the haters and the media says.

 Photo by Lizzy Davis.

Rob Zombie

Rob Zombie released their self proclaimed, "heaviest, most fucked up musical monster to date," just two nights prior to their headlining set at Welcome to Rockville and gave the crowd a taste of many of the new songs (including the first single, "Well, Everybody's Fucking in a U.F.O") mixed in with an array of classic hits such as "Thunder Kiss '65" and "Dragula" from over the years.

Other performances throughout the day included: Issues, We Came As Romans, Memphis May Fire, P.O.D., Yelawolf, Clutch, Ghost, Anthrax and Cypress Hill.

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