Wage War’s Latest LP Proves ‘Pressure’ Can Make Great Things

Courtesy: Fearless Records

Metalcore outfit Wage War released its third full-length studio recording this summer.  The album, Pressure has proven to be divisive among audiences, with some audiences alleging it presents the band straying from its roots, while others praising it for the growth exhibited over the course of its dozen total songs both in its musical and lyrical content.  Those who have taken time to criticize the records are missing the bigger picture, as they clearly have an aversion to change.  The whole of Pressure proves a positive offering from the group, whether it is audiences’ first exposure to the band or the latest.  That is proven in part through a pair of songs featured late in the album’s 41-minute run time – ‘Fury’ and ‘Take The Fight.’  The songs’ heavy musical arrangements and their inspiring, uplifting lyrical content serve to make them two of the record’s strongest entries.  ‘Prison,’ which comes much earlier in the album’s run is another of the album’s most notable additions.  When it is considered along with ‘Fury,’ ‘Take The Fight’ and the rest of the album’s songs, the whole of the album becomes a work that will appeal easily to mot Wage War fans and metalcore fans in general.

Wage War’s third full-length studio recording Pressure is a positive new offering from the up-and-coming Florida-based metalcore outfit.  That is due to musical and lyrical content that collectively offers its own share of entertainment and inspiration all at the same time.  One of the songs featured in the record’s run that supports those statements comes late in the album’s run in the form of ‘Fury.’  Musically speaking, this song’s musical content lends itself to comparisons to works from fellow metalcore bands, such as Of Mice & Men and As I Lay Dying.  At the same time though, it also lends itself to a comparison to the best works of Slipknot.  That is evident in the song’s breakdowns and its pummeling percussion elements.  Front man Briton Bond’s vocal delivery adds to that comparison just as much as the work of his fellow band mates.  The whole of their work makes this adrenaline-fueled fist-pumper a sure-fire hit both on record and on stage.  That fiery, unforgettable musical content couples with the song’s lyrical content to strengthen the song’s standing even more.

The song’s lyrical content is important to discuss because of the confident, defiant stance that it takes against the odds stacked against a person.  Briton writes in the song’s lead verse, “My scars have shown me who to be/Held me down, pushed around, but never buried me/No compromise, no fear of pain/I fight the war when you run the other way/One judgment, no jury/I am, I am the fury/Break free/You have to face the truth/No peace/Where there’s a war in you/One judgment, no jury/I am, I am the fury.”  He continues writing in the song’s second verse, “This is a warning shot/It keeps me honest to God/You could never survive in a world of casualty/Open wounds turned to brick, built my legacy.”  He adds in the song’s brief final verse, “All my enemies hide around me/I am the fury.”  Again, here is that statement of defiance.  This is overall, a statement from someone saying that he is not letting himself be held back or down anymore, but rather is going to stand up against all obstacles.  It is a full-on aggressive statement that, when coupled with the song’s equally aggressive musical content, makes the song in whole a clear example of what makes Pressure such a solid record from Wage War.  It is just one of the album’s most notable entries.  ‘Take The Fight’ is another of the album’s most notable entries.

‘Take The Fight’ stands out among Pressure’s most notable entries because like ‘Fury,’ it is a work that both musically and lyrically presents a sense of self-determination and defiance.  What is important to note here is that even with that in mind, it does not just rehash that noted song.  Rather, it gives listeners something fresh and new.  It musical arrangement actually stands out as something that could just as easily be compared to works featured in Sevendust’s 2007 album Alpha with its heavy, crunching melodic hard rock approach and hybrid screaming/clean vocals.  One could even make a comparison to the best works of The Veer Union in this case.  It is a work that will appeal not just to metalcore fans and the band’s fans, but also hard rock and metal fans in general.  That widely appealing arrangement couples with the song’s equally powerful lyrical content to make the song in whole its own key addition to the album

The song’s lyrical content is powerful in its own right in that it delivers its own message of self-confidence.  That message is most clear in the song’s chorus, in which Briton sings, “I know/I know that I am not alone/When I’m standing on my own/They can say what they say/Say what they say/But it doesn’t change/I know/I know that I am not alone/When there’s nowhere else to go/They can say what they say/Blame who they blame/But they can’t take the fight from me.”  The “they” who are mentioned are those who live to make others’ lives miserable; those people who do everything in their power to bring others down.  The song’s defiant, determined message is almost as evident in th song’s lead verse, during which Briton sings, “Is anybody out there?/Let me know/Feel like you’re over it/Had enough?/Are you afraid to wake up/’Cause it shows/Tell me what it takes to break and let go.”  This moment comes across as Briton asking from the vantage point of the song’s subject if anyone else feels like the song’s subject.  He adds in that verse, “Is anybody out there?/Let me know/feel like you’re over it/Had enough?/Are you afraid to wake up/’Cause it shows/I’m not gonna break and bow to no throne.”  Again, this is that defiance, that certainty that the subject is not going to let certain forces hold him down.  He continues in the song’s second verse, “I’m not gonna stand down/Living like I’m one foot in the grave/I refuse to let you do the same/tell me what it takes to break your own chains/I see pain/I see rage/See the change that you want written on your face/I see pain/I see rage/See the world as a place where we’re all the same.”  This is the song’s subject identifying with others who feel like him.  In relating to those people, the song’s subject strengthens himself emotionally.  Considering this and the song’s equally strong, confident musical arrangement, the whole of the song shows itself to be its own key addition to Pressure.  When it is considered alongside ‘Fury,’ the two songs together go a long way toward showing why Pressure is such a positive new offering from Wage War.  They are just two of the album’s key songs.  ‘Prison,’ which comes early in the album’s run, is important in its own way to the whole of the album.

‘Prison’ stands out because unlike the previously discussed songs, its musical and lyrical content come across as being polar opposites of one another.  The song’s musical arrangement is another driving, up-tempo presentation that will get any listener’s blood flowing.  By contrast, the song’s lyrical content presents a far more introspective story.

The lyrical content featured in ‘Prison’ comes across more as a person who is struggling to come to terms with himself and his place in the world.  Considering that, one would expect the song’s musical arrangement to match.  Even with that contrast in mind, the song in whole still works in its own way.  Briton sings in the song’s lead verse, “Feels like I’m caught in a whirlwind inside my head/I’m my own natural disaster beneath my skin/I can’t explain/And you just won’t get it/I can’t numb the pain/It’s all I think about/I’m too deep to believe I can face myself/It’s hard not to give up when you go through hell/I’m trapped in my skin/This is my prison.”  Again, this comes across as someone having some trouble coming to terms with his identity and his place in the world.  Usually with songs, such as this, the song’s musical arrangement would be more of a slow, melancholic composition.  That proved to not be the case here, though.  It makes for quite the interesting work in whole.  He continues in the song’s second verse, “Behind the bars I create for myself/No one else to blame/Alone and helpless/I’m tied to all this/Living in my chain.”  He returns to the song’s chorus from here.  Once again, this comes across as someone who is going through a difficult point in his life in terms of self-realization.  Considering the song’s musical arrangement, maybe this vantage point is one of someone at the start of that somewhat downward spiral.  The song’s subject is going through the anger stage of self-realization here rather than the more depressing stage.  With that possibility in mind, the song would seem to make more sense with its musical and lyrical content in whole.  To that end, that relatable lyrical content and infectious musical content proves even more crucial to the whole of the album.  Together with ‘Fury,’ ‘Take The Fight’ and the rest of the album’s entries, the whole of the album shows even more why it is such an appealing work for Wage War’s fans and those of the metalcore genre.

Wage War’s latest full-length studio recording Pressure is a strong  new offering from the up-and-coming metalcore outfit.  That is due to the record’s collective musical and lyrical content, as has been evidenced here.  ‘Forget My Name,’ which comes late in the album’s run, ‘Who I Am’ and ‘Grave’ do just as much to support the noted statement as the songs addressed here.  When they are considered along with the rest of the album’s works, the whole of the album becomes its own positive new offering from Wage War.  Pressure is available now.  More information on the album is available now along with all of Wage War’s latest tour dates, news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://wagewarband.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/wagewar

Twitter: http://twitter.com/wagewar

 

 

 

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Monster Energy Aftershock Festival Lineup Announced; Tickets On Sale Now

Courtesy: Danny Wimmer Presents

The Monster Energy Aftershock Festival is coming back to California this year.

The annual festival is scheduled to be held October 13 and 14 at Sacramento’s Discovery Park.  Now in its seventh year, the festival will be headlined this year by System of a Down, Alice in Chains and Deftones.  This year marks the first time that System of a Down has performed at the festival.

Along with being the band’s first year at the festival, System of a Down’s performance at the Aftershock Festival will also be the band’s first announced U.S. appearance in three years.  It is also part of the band’s 20th anniversary celebration of its landmark self-titled album’s release.

While System of a Down, Alice in Chains and Deftones are the two-day festival’s planned headliners, they are not the only bands on the bill.  Also scheduled for the performance are Godsmack (which is currently touring in support of its brand new album When Legends Rise), Incubus, Seether, Jonathan Davis (whose latest solo album Black Labyrinth is scheduled for release May 25), At The Drive-In and Slash ft. Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators (who are currently working on their latest album) as well as Bullet For my Valentine (whose new album Gravity is scheduled to be released June 29), Sevendust (whose album All I See Is War is out now) and many more.  The full lineup for this year’s festival is noted below.

The current band lineup for Monster Energy Aftershock is as follows: System Of A Down, Deftones, Alice In Chains, Incubus, Godsmack, Shinedown, 311, Slash Featuring Myles Kennedy And The Conspirators, At The Drive-In, Seether, Jonathan Davis, Bullet For My Valentine, Underoath, Black Veil Brides, Hellyeah, Asking Alexandria, Sevendust, Everlast, GWAR, Emmure, Stick To Your Guns, Dance Gavin Dance, Monster Magnet, Red Sun Rising, Bad Wolves, The Fever 333, Dorothy, Wage War, Plague Vendor, Hyro The Hero, Amigo The Devil, All Them Witches, Slothrust, The Dose, Viza, The Jacks and more to be announced.

Providing food for this year’s festival will be a variety of vendors including: Southern Hospitality Concessions LLC, Danny Wimmer Presents’ affiliate concessionaire.  Food trucks will also be on hand, providing savory and sweet treats from: Angry Bird Grill, Bacon Mania, Barrett’s Burgers, Barrett’s Sliders, Big Joe’s BBQ, Bubba’s BBQ, Cousins Maine Lobster, Dippin Dots Ice Cream, Dogtown, Drewski’s Hot Rod Sandwiches, Florez Bar & Grill, La Mex Taqueria, Mac Attack, Mount Olympus, Sausage King, Smokin’ Hot Pizza, Spicy Pie and Xochimilco Mexican Restaurant.

Beverages will be available from a variety of vendors, including vendors for festival-goers 21 and older.  Those vendors include: Caduceus Vellars & Merkin Vineyards Wine Garden (owned by Tool/A Perfect Circle/ Puscifer front man Maynard James Keenan) and the Belching Beaver Bar (featuring drafts from the Vista, CA brewer including the Phantom Bride IPA, a collaboration with the Defones).  Mrkt N Jolt will also be on site, offering hot coffee, cold brew and other items.

As if the music, food and drink isn’t enough for festival-goers, this year’s festival will also offer lots of entertainment options.  Those options include the Monster Energy Experience, which gives audiences the chance to meet and greet the bands while also sampling the festival’s various offered drinks, The Music Experience, which is an interactive exhibit and music instrument retailer.  Non-profit animal rescue organization Take Me Home will also be on-site along with Dyin 2 Live/FXck Cancer, a wish-granting organization.  Fans can buy music from the festival’s bands on site at the f.y.e. Fan Experience.

Festival-goers can win prizes and check out the latest products from Zippo Lighters at Zippo Encore and charge their phones at SWFTCharge.

Tickets and VIP packages for this year’s festival are on-sale now.  Prices are listed below.  Service fees on all ticket purchases include a $0.50 charity fee for the T.J. Martell Foundation, a foundation aimed at researching and fighting cancer.  Active military personnel get discounts on their tickets through GovX.

Initial ticket prices will be as follows:

  • 2-Day Weekend General Admission: starting at $149.50 + fees
  • 2-Day Weekend VIP: starting at $299.50 + fees
  • Single Day General Admission: starting at $89.50 + fees
  • Single Day VIP: starting at $179.50 + fees

VIP tickets include: VIP entrance lanes to the venue, shaded VIP hang area with seating for dining, a VIP-only viewing area of main stage, video screens featuring a live feed of main stage inside the VIP hang area, upgraded food and drink selections, dedicated VIP restrooms and commemorative VIP Monster Energy Aftershock laminate.

A park & ride shuttle is being offered again for this year’s festival as parking at Discovery park is very limited.  Every ticket includes parking at Sleep Train Arena and non-stop shuttle directly to the festival site.

The Monster Energy Aftershock Festival is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents and fueled by Monster Energy.  It is sponsored by f.y.e., Coors Light, Jack Daniels, Zippo Encore, The Music Experience, SWFTCharge, Fxck Cancer, Ace of Spades, Take Me Home and Belching Beaver.  More sponsors will be announced later.

More information on this year’s Monster Energy Aftershock Festival is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.AftershockFestival.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AftershockFestival

Twitter: http://twitter.com/AftershockSac

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

 

 

2017 Rock On The Range Festival Lineup Announced

Courtesy: Danny Wimmer Presents/AEG Live

Courtesy: Danny Wimmer Presents/AEG Live

The lineup for the 2017 Rock on the Range Festival has been announced, and once again it has proven to be quite the collection of acts.

The three-day festival will be headlined by Metallica, Soundgarden and Korn.  It will feature more than 50 bands over the course of that time along with some of the country’s top comics at the festival’s Rock on the Range Rolling Rock Comedy Tent.

The lineup for the 2017 Rock on the Range Festival includes: Metallica, Soundgarden, Korn, The Offspring, Volbeat, Primus, Bush, Chevelle, Papa Roach, Seether, Coheed & Cambria, Alter Bridge, The Pretty Reckless, Taking Back Sunday, Thrice, Amon Amarth, Pierce The Veil, Sum 41, Skillet, Dillinger Escape Plan, In Flames, Gojira, Biffy Clyro, Motionless In White, Nothing More, Beartooth, Starset, Every Time I Die, The Story So Far, Deafheaven, Zakk Sabbath, Rival Sons, The Amity Affliction, Attila, Norma Jean, Suicide Silence, Whitechapel, I Prevail, Turnstile, Dinosaur Pile-Up, Red Fang, Dorothy, Kyng, Radkey, As Lions, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, Sylar, Fire From The Gods, Badflower, Wage War, Goodbye June, Cover Your Tracks, DED, Bleeker, Royal Republic, Mother Feather, Aeges and One Less Reason.

Rock on the Range—fueled by Monster Energy—is billed as America’s largest and most acclaimed rock festival.  The festival will also feature in 2017 “The Music Experience,” art installations, and unique on-site activities over the course of the festival’s three days.

Tickets for the 2016 festival sold out more than two months in advance of the festival.  It marked the fourth consecutive year the festival has sold out in advance.

Weekend Field, new Weekend Field VIP, Weekend Stadium and a limited number of Weekend Stadium 4-packs are available now for purchase.  A layaway option is also available for concert-goers.  That option allows audiences to split the cost of their ticket/ticket packages into four separate monthly payments.

Fans can get a pre-sale password for Weekend Field VIP, Weekend Field GA, Weekend Stadium GA and Weekend Stadium GA 4-packs on the official Rock on the Range website, Facebook page and Twitter page.  The ticket prices are listed below.

 

  • Weekend Field VIP: starting at $349.50* + fees
  • Weekend Field GA: starting at $199.50* + fees
  • Weekend Stadium GA: starting at $99.50* + fees
  • Weekend Stadium GA Ticket 4-Pack: $380.00 + fees
  • * Phase One prices listed
  • *** Ticket prices automatically move to the next price level once the allotment sells out ***

General on-sale for tickets is Friday, Dec. 2 at 10 a.m. EST.  Tickets will be available online at the festival’s website, at Ticketmaster locations and the MAPFRE Stadium box office.

Audiences who want an even more special concert experience can purchase the new Uber Ranger Camping Package.  The package includes amenities for four people such as luxury RV on a double campsite at the Ohio Expo North Campground (May 18 – 21), a dedicated concierge with golf cart shuttle, 4 Weekend VIP Field Admission Tickets, a backstage tour, access to the stadium club (with catered lunch and dinner), access to the Side Stage Viewing Platform, access to the VIP Lounge and more.  More information on the new Uber Ranger Camping Package is available here.

Rock on The Range celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2016.  More than 120,000 people attended the festival from around the world.  As part of its 10th anniversary celebration, Columbus, OH mayor Andrew J. Ginther and the Columbus, OH city council presented festival organizers with awards of recognition.  A resolution was also announced from the Franklin County Board of Commissioners acknowledging the festival’s economic impact on the city.

The commissioners pointed out in their resolution pointed out the festival brought in more than $140 million for the city over the course of its ten years in the city.

Rock on the Range is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents, AEG Live and MAPFRE Stadium.  It is supported by Monster Energy, Bud Light and Zippo.  They and other partners will feature interactive experiences, meet & greets, and other special fan engagement opportunities throughout the festival.

More information on the 2017 Rock on the Range Festival is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.RockontheRange.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/rockontherange

Twitter: http://twitter.com/rockontherange

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep  up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.