Carnivores Tour: Delivers Arena Rock Perfection at PNC Pavilion
A blast from the past, a look to the future.
Linkin Park, Thirty Seconds To Mars, and AFI set Charlotte ablaze with tiny humans moshing their hearts out and parental units doing the same. I was but a wee-one when I first heard the notion of nu-metal, to the hiss and outrage of metal fans damning anything to do with the genre. Then there was this little known band, Linkin Park, paving the ways for all bands to drag behind them for eternity. Let’s face it, they have coined the genre and have always led the way in most anything they’ve done. The band is featured on upwards of 50 game and movie soundtracks. Their work has received a total of 60 awards from 174 nominations, all the while keeping as connected as possible with their fans, unlike many popular artist who seem unreachable. They have vlogs playfully named “Linkin Logs,” websites specifically made for each tour they embark on, and fan chats weekly combined with daily play-by-play on what the band is doing. If you were not a fan before this show and left still detesting the music, you absolutely without a doubt fell in love with their live show at the very least.
The first band up for the night was AFI (A Fire Inside), led by model and vegan activist Davey Havok. His energy on-stage really attacked my lens like you attack water after a 5k, and he ran at least five kilometers on stage, jumping from ego riser to ego riser and running out into the crowd to sing with the fans.
One fan’s face flushed bright red as he stood within an inch of her. When I am backstage interviewing bands, these moments are what they talk about the most. She belted almost inaudible lyrics into the mic as he smiled upon her. Today I was witness to the power, calm, and joy bands speak of in small detours from the stage to hang out in the crowd.
I have only two questions after seeing this intense performance; Why did they ever stop touring and when can I photograph them again!?
Next up was Jared Leto’s Grammy award-winning band, Thirty Seconds To Mars. Not to discount any of the rest of the band, but most concert goers I spotted were donning shirts splattered with Jared’s face and “I love Leto,” painted on their cheeks. Nary a one could tell me anything about the rest of them musically, minus that his brother was also in the band.
It angered me, as this show was so much more than that. The photo pit for them was back at the soundboard, which is notoriously shitty for photographers. No matter the length or ability of your lens and skill, you still do not have that connection like shooting from the photo pit at the front of the stage. Leto bounced on stage, wearing an outfit indicative of the lord savior himself, donned in a golden crown and aviators.
His spell on the crowd lasted the whole set and at times he even asked everyone to “Get up out of your seats and get down low to the ground. I don’t think you fucking heard me get down,down,down……
He crouched low on stage to finish the song and then relieved the fans of their crouching duties. The entire set was a perfect mesh of fan and band favorites. Many were enjoying the performance but I did hear a few fans shout “When is Linkin Park coming on? I can only take so much Leto!” Not many agreed with this statement but it was a heavier Linkin Park crowd this night in the PNC Music Pavilion.
Then it was almost time, we were ushered into the photo pit a bit early, as Linkin Park was nowhere to be found. The confetti lay heavily upon the ground from the 30STM set. The DJ was pouring a heavy bass beat out of the speakers, shaking all of us in the front to the core. The stage had drum risers, a DJ booth, and two ego risers.
The lights were tested again for the massive light spectacle that was about to start, and then it happened. Small, billowing bits of smoke surrounded my face and the band slowly dribbled on stage.
They ripped into a barrage of songs that took me back to my youth, drowned me in my 20s, and spit me back out into present day where I stood enamored all over again. They played much of their new album The Hunting Party, with just enough old school pitched in to keep everyone happy.
The pitch perfect display of rhythm, vocal styling with discordant screamo angst, hip-hop, and spirit, bled on the stage for all to see. The front rows were filmed by the band and videographer, as happens at all LP shows. The fans from the back all the way to where I stood lost their fucking minds. The crowd was so loud, sometimes you almost could not hear the band, especially during the older songs.
My time was up in the photo pit and at the show for the night. I left with a smile upon my face, a ringing in my ears, and a yearning to hop in the car and drive to the next town and do it all again.
Until next time, you have a chance to catch this star-studded tour of ages in your town.
Remaining Tour Dates:
08/18 − Holmdale, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center
08/19 − Wantagh, NY @ Jones Beach
08/21 − Buffalo, NY @ Darien Lake
08/23 − Montreal, QC @ Parc Jean Drepeau
08/24 − Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Center
08/26 − St. Paul, MN @ Minnesota St. Fair
08/27 − Winnipeg, SK @ MTS Center
08/29 − Chicago, IL @ First Midwest Bank Pavilion
08/30 − Detroit, MI @ DTE Energy Music Theatre
09/06 − Houston, TX @ Cynthia Woods Pavilion
09/06 − Dallas, TX @ Geza Energy Pavilion
09/08 − Denver, CO @ Fiddler’s Green
09/10 − Phoenix, AZ @ US Airways Arena
09/11 − Irvine, CA @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
09/13 − Quincy, WA @ The Gorge
09/15 − Hollywood, CA @ Hollywood Bowl
09/16 − San Diego, CA @ Sleep Train Amphitheatre
09/18 − Sacramento, CA @ Sleep Train Amphitheatre
09/19 − Concord, CA @ Concord Pavilion