Las Rageous was Outrageous!!! I mean this in the best way possible. This two day festival April 20 and 21 in downtown Las Vegas couldn’t have happened at better time of year. The 80 degree temperatures were heaven sent for those who were escaping the recent blizzards on the East Coast and in Canada. Attended by approximately 12,000 people from throughout states and countries around the world, the second annual did not disappoint.
The two stages were headlined on 4/20 by A Day to Remember and a much anticipated Perfect Circle. Prior to the headliners were local battle of the bands winners, Silence Speaks. One of my highlights was meeting Aaron Singleton’s (Bassist and Backup Vocalist) very enthusiastic younger brother, Cole. He was their biggest fan and supporter, making sure I took note of them.
Also early in the day were Slaves (filling in for the dropout band Beartooth), Vyces, and local favorites Otherwise. Lead singer Adrian of Otherwise took time to bring out his adorable son to pump up the crowd. This was a memorable moment touching the normally rough and tough metal head crowd.
Continuing the mid-evening line up were Pop Evil, New Year’s Day, Underoath and Clutch. Pop Evil consistently brings energy and prepares the crowd for the crowning performances of the night. I finally was able to experience two bands I had never seen before and was beyond pleased with the outcome. New Year’s Day, with lead singer Ash Costello, brought a hunger and excitement to her performance that sucked the crowd immediately into experience the energy of the whole band. I’m confident they gained many new followers from their appearance. Underoath was the other band that had me on pins and needles. The new record “Erase Me” is fantastic seeping with emotion. Lead singer Spencer Chamberlain converted those songs into his body, writhing and rolling on the ground to help us understand these feelings. I was fortunate to get a set list of their first performance to support the new tunes.
A Day to Remember whipped the crowd into an utter frenzy. By the time A Perfect Circle came on many people had left and unfortunately the energy for them dwindled to a flicker of what it was earlier in the day.
Day two closed with strong performances from long time favorites Judas Priest and local residents Five Finger Death Punch. Highlights for me occurred earlier in the day. Bad Wolves opened up the small stage with 2017 breakout band DED immediately following on the larger of the two.
They stirred the crowd into an early turmoil complete with most pits and crowd surfing. Not an easy feat for the typical main stage opening band to accomplish. These guys never disappoint. Joyous Wolf from Orange County, CA had their work cut out following DED. Fortunately, lead singer Nick Reese knows how to bring edginess to his live performances. His commitment to every song is unmatched. To show his dedication to the fans he climbed the stage tower to the very top which resulted in his set being shut down. The crowd was not pleased by the decision of promoters/security.
Next-Las Vegas natives Adelitas Way continued with another in your face performance. This was the last stop in their recent headline tour and they let it fly for the hometown crowd. I missed sets from Blackstar Riders and Saxon both of which I am told were solid. Hollywood Undead had everyone participating like an old school dance party and In This Moment pulled off a visually pleasing head banging performance with a mixture of old and new tunes.
Overall, it was a terrific festival that I would highly recommend. I love two stages where you are able to see all your favorites without conflict. The venue made some great improvements over last year. This included adding astro turf to the main stage area which was formerly a giant parking lot emanating heat like a sauna. The layout for VIP guests was enhanced with better viewing areas. Plentiful restrooms were also appreciated.
I would like to give a special shout out to Mark Barkhurst from Oregon. He provided me with a complimentary ticket to support my live music habit and make sure I could share with all of you the Las Rageous experience. The generosity and kindness of humans like Mark reaffirms my beliefs that we are truly a family-a hard rocking, heavy metal family that takes care of each other. Horns Up and Rock On Fam!!