Korn And Rob Zombie Bring Return of the Dreads Tour To Austin (SHOW REVIEW)

Rock music in the 90’s may be best known for combining many “non-rock” elements together and many times crossing genres. Artists like Beck, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Radiohead were so outside of traditional rock that they are truly Alternative. Where bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam took elements of heavy metal and created grunge, bands like Korn and White Zombie took heavy metal in a different direction. Korn took the guitar solos out and made music centered instead around guitar riffs played on down tuned 7-string guitars and thus Nu Metal was created. White Zombie, and later Rob Zombie, took elements of hardcore punk, industrial metal, noise rock and heavy metal and essentially became an alternative metal band. Currently, both Korn and Rob Zombie are touring together in what is coined The Return of the Dreads tour.

Playing the earlier slot on the tour was nu metal pioneers Korn, and thousands of fans sporting tribal tattoos and questionable hairstyles were there to greet them. After opening the show with “Right Now” off of 2003’s Take a Look in the Mirror, the first half of the show continued in the same vein of playing songs that were released after 2000. Also included was a track off their forthcoming album The Serenity of Suffering called “Rotting in Vain” which sounded like it could have been on any album from the past decade. The setlist took a more nostalgic turn when Jonathan Davis brought out a set of bagpipes to start “Shoots and Ladders” from their debut self-titled album. Those in the audience that had been seated for the first half of the set got to their feet and stayed there for the rest of the set. “Blind”, “Got the Life” and “Freak on a Leash” had everyone screaming along and Davis noted that it was “great playing these big motherfucking places again.”

Before Rob Zombie took to the stage, the crowd was already excited by the extravagant stage setup which included giant monster heads and a massive boom box. “Dead City Radio and the New Gods of Supertown” from 2013’s Venomous Rat Regeneration Vendor opened the show, and giant screens and smaller ones on the risers showed videos for each song that were all presumably made by Rob Zombie himself. While the songs from his solo career like “Living Dead Girl” and “In the Age of the Consecrated Vampire We All Get High” were greeted with ecstasy by the enthusiastic audience, the real highlights of the night were the covers. Though only slightly covers, White Zombie’s “More Human Than Human” and “Thunder Kiss ‘65” were worth the price of admission alone. Also, showing his more humorous side, Zombie introduced the band while they played an instrumental version of Tone Loc’s “Wild Thing” and closed the set with Grand Funk Railroad’s “We’re An American Band”. Just before finishing the set guitarist John 5 wowed the audience with some super technical guitar solos while Zombie walked through the crowd. Once back on stage, Zombie exclaimed that he had been “selfied to death” and asked the audience to put away their phones for three minutes and just enjoy the show. This of course proved too difficult for a few people in the crowd. During the encore break a preview for Rob Zombie’s newest film “31” was played and the band returned to play “Dragula” before the night ended.

While metal fans will decry the fact that the word “metal” is even associated with bands like Korn and Rob Zombie, it hardly seems to matter. As far as rock concerts go, both bands know how to put on a solidly impressive show and give the audience their money’s worth.

Korn Setlist Austin360 Amphitheater, Austin, TX, USA 2016, Return of the Dreads

Rob Zombie Setlist Austin360 Amphitheater, Austin, TX, USA 2016, Return of the Dreads

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One Response

  1. I attended Thursday’s show in Dallas, Texas….it was the freakin bomb!!!!! KoRn rules bitches!!!!!

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