Only a week after Riot Fest I was off to see another multitude of great acts, but at least this time the weather was incredible. Last time I went we got rained on, much like at Riot, so the bright sunny weekend was a wonderful change of pace.
We arrived in Atlanta just in time for the fest to start and to see Vinyl Theatre, and Kodaline. Both are bands I have been hearing on Alt Nation on SiriusXM radio and wanted to catch even though I don’t know much of their stuff. After that it was Tove Lo. I wasn’t much a fan of her, but she was pretty great live, and that isn’t just because she flashed us during her “Talking Bodies” song but that doesn’t hurt either! Because there was nothing else to do but kill time and watch Hozier, we sat on the grassy knoll and did just that. I’m not a fan of his at all, but he did sound good honestly. Finally it was time to see Alice In Chains. Brad and I were about three people from the stage and they were incredible! I know it’s not the original singer, but the new guy sounded really great still. I was happy to see yet another 90’s band that I grew up listening to. The headliners for Friday night were Drake and Elton John which we ended up splitting sets to see both. Elton John played more songs that I knew than I thought he would so that was enjoyable. Drake was cool but I found it odd that he would only sing one verse of a song and then go on to the next song and do just one verse and so on. I mean I heard a lot of songs that way but I still would have liked to hear verse 2 of a couple songs.
Saturday was the day we were mainly going for though. We started of the day with Colony House, X Ambassadors (who I thought were really good even though I only know the one song) and Andrew McMahon (again). The Airborne Toxic Event were another band that I had heard a lot on Alt Nation and I really enjoyed their set too. The highlights of their set were their covers of Kid Kudi’s “Pursuit of Happiness” and The Crickets “I Fought The Law.” Next we had two classics with Hall and Oates, and Billy Idol. I went and caught a little Icona Pop just to see them, and then yet another Alt Nation band Catfish and The Bottlemen. I had been looking forward to the Catfish set for a while because I really enjoy their album, everyone should check them out. The worst split of the fest was Panic! At The Disco, and Run The Jewels. Since I really didn’t want to hear “I write Sins…” at all because I’m so tired of it I chose the beginning of the Panic! set. They played some classics, but I also ended up missing Run The Jewels bringing out Big Boi and T.I. for a couple of songs… dammit. Their set was still great though from the second half that I saw.
Lastly I caught a couple songs by Lenny Kravitz and then the moment we came for: Van Halen! I was closer than I ever thought I could be at their set. They played every song I could have wanted to hear even coming out to “Light Up The Sky” which I had had in my head for days before seeing them. Alex did a great drum solo, but paled in comparison to the guitar solo Eddie pulled out which went right into “Eruption” then into “You Really Got Me.” This was all a life long dream for me, and a perfect way to end the weekend!