ShareThis Page
Home

Heavy lineup

| Thursday, July 29, 2004

Some things are best left alone. After a one-year detour to Pittsburgh, the Rolling Rock Town Fair is returning to the greener pastures of the Westmoreland County Fairgrounds in Mt. Pleasant.

Poor attendance plagued last year's festival at Heinz Field -- the crowd was announced at 25,000 -- despite a lineup featuring Blink-182, 311 and Def Leppard. Organizers expect the sylvan setting of the fairgrounds to revive the spirit of the first three Town Fairs, which attracted sellout crowds,

This year's band not to be missed is Velvet Revolver, featuring ex-Guns N' Roses players Slash, Matt Sorum and Duff McKagan, with former Stone Temple Pilots lead singer Scott Weiland.

The rest of the lineup has a definite heavy-rock vibe, with a few variants.

Here are the players:

Staind: Best known for singer Aaron Lewis' gut-wrenching vocals -- and being championed by Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit -- Staind's angst-ridden music found widespread favor with a single that was the musical antithesis of the heavy rock movement it was aligned with. "It's Been Awhile" was a relatively quiet moment for the band from Springfield, Mass., which managed to separate itself further from bands of the same ilk with the release of "14 Shades of Grey" in 2003.

Disturbed: A variation on the same vibe as Staind, but different, Disturbed has more of a heavy-metal sound. Think of Soundgarden distilled through Judas Priest. But don't let them next to Finch, another band playing the Town Fair; the bands have a longstanding war of words.

N.E.R.D.: They'll stand out by virtue of being the sole representatives of hip-hop on the bill, but expect N.E.R.D. to put on one of the most crowd-pleasing sets at Town Fair Five. Featuring Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo of the production team the Neptunes, the band gives a likable irascibility -- not to mention groove -- to songs like "She Wants to Move" and "Fly or Die" that puts them in the same league with OutKast.

The Crystal Method: Another group that should be interesting by sound alone, the Crystal Method has been called the American version of the Chemical Brothers. Acknowledged pioneers in electronica, the Town Fair will be a rare live performance by the Los Angeles-based duo.

Hoobastank: The band with a Seussical name has emerged this year with a hit single, "The Reason," which reached No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. By far the most pop-oriented band on the Town Fair roster.

Sevendust: Metal and ... soul• Well, not quite, but lead singer Lajon Witherspoon is more Otis Redding than Ozzy Osbourne.

Finch: No, they're not David Spade clones, but a heavy-rock band that has an avowed dislike for Disturbed. Hopefully, the mellow mood of the Town Fair will preclude any fireworks.

Three Days Grace: And now for a dollop of punk music. Three Days Grace, now based in Toronto by way of Norwood, Ontario, will bring a little bit of peace and love via songs such as "(I Hate) Everything About You" and "Burn."

Finger Eleven: Another band from Canada that's more metal than mellow, disproving the theory that all Canadians aspire to be Neil Young or Joni Mitchell.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me