Korn @ Continental Airlines Arena (3/28/2006)

Logo - Korn

Artist: Korn
Venue: Continental Airlines Arena (East Rutherford, NJ)
Opener: Mudvayne, 10 Years
Date: 3/28/2006
Label: Virgin Music

Given this would be my first time witnessing them I would safely have to say that Korn is an interesting phenomenon up close and personal. The appeal that the band has to a segment of the music listening public is uncanny to behold. It is an allegiance that most bands can only hope for after many years of performance and not all find themselves being as lucky. Tonight at The Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford N.J., the levels of angst and teenage rage against the system would be at an all time high. Joining Korn on their journey into the psyche of American youth would be the bands 10 Years and Mudvayne.

I had never heard of or seen 10 Years before tonight and I really found them to be a stand out part of the performance. The band has a very Tool-like or Perfect Circle vibe to their music and the lead singer is a dread-locked makeup-wearing enigma. He does a great job and had a fantastic response for someone who was performing in front of a primarily new audience to their stuff. They are promoting their new CD entitled “The Autumn Effect”. I plan to look more into them going forward and perhaps will be able to review the CD sometime soon. If you like the bands I draw some comparison to then I think you will be impressed with this group of guys from Knoxville, TN. Mudvayne would be up next and seemed to fit right into the large venue performance. Yes, I know they have been around for a few years but I think the Mudvayne we see lately is a more mature and a more seasoned band. Performing on last years Ozzfest certainly proved to a lot of people that they were not simply some “Nu Metal” band that should be ignored like much of the genre. They are a perfect combination of Metal aggression tempered with highly technical playing and their latest effort “Lost & Found” is a great piece of their brand of Metal. Tonight the band would play selections from their back catalog as well as a number of popular pieces from the new album. They’re an energetic bunch from the time they hit the stage until the time they are done and truly seemed to generate power from the screaming crowd. Given the response Mudvayne was receiving during their set made it seem that just as many people were there for them as they were for Korn. It was a smart idea to put these two together on such a tour for the idea worked on a number of levels.

Mudvayne Set: Determined, Silenced, -1, Death Blooms, Fall Into Sleep, Pushing Through, Not Falling, Nothing to Gein, Happy?, Dig

When Korn hit the stage it was on. The band was supporting their latest album “See You On The Other Side” and had recently lost a member of their group who decided to follow his religious ideals instead of playing music. To be very honest it did not seem that Korn missed a step without Head’s guitar presence. The rest of the guys immediately stepped up to the plate and make it just fine without him. Seeing him in person for the first time, I felt that lead singer Jonathan Davis was among the most unique people in the role of singer. His voice and presence seem to be able to fill you with inspiration and even fear with the two often colliding in the same song. Being my own photographer for the show as well allowed me to be within feet of him as he began the show, taking every note to its limit and holding the audience completely in his command. It was amazing to witness this from this vantage point even though it was for a few short minutes until the photo stuff was finished. Jonathan’s powerful presence made me notice a couple of girls in the front being moved to tears at some points. I was not too sure what to expect of the band during a show, but I did know that Korn often did things in a big way. After a few songs played a couple of percussionists, another guitarist and more joined the band. Everyone was wearing masks that related to the artwork of David Stoupakis that is featured on the album. I believe his art was also a large part of the designs on the screens behind the band as well throughout the show. The set ran just over two hours and that really gives the fans the most value for their money. You can tell by the provided set list that not much was left out and since I had recently reviewed the new album I can stress on how good these songs sound in the concert setting. It is a different album from what they had previously done, but it is dark and falls in line with what the fans have come to love about them. While I felt the performance was tight with Fieldy doing great work on the bass while Davids drums thundered, I really was impressed by the guitar work that Munky did during the show and his interlude. At times there was a second drummer which I don’t always like and I felt took away from Davids playing even while it was making the sound fuller. I have to say that I was surprised at the utter lack of crowd surfing but amazed at how the kids could find moshing more in tune with the songs played. I guess one needs to be a bigger follower of the sounds they play to know how to approach that as they play. To me, Korn is not moshable stuff (but I don’t most at all anymore these days). The venue was a “theatre based” show which finds sections of the arena blocked off from the public. Giant curtains are hung in front of the sections on the top of the venue. It allows the sound to be Arena level in power, but the crowd to be a little more intimate to those in attendance, and for the band. Safe guesstimate on the numbers for this setting is about 9,000. Not a bad draw at all when you compare it to other shows of its kind. Korn is worth seeing once in your life if you have not done this already and in other reviews I have given props to the level of quality one finds when Mudvayne plays. Overall I left with a feeling of satisfaction on what I witnessed and wondered when I would be able to see each of them again.

Photographer Notes: Tonight I was totally on my own and as a result, the pictures are not what I expected to have them end up being. The highlight was shooting my first show at The Continental Airlines Arena, but the lowlight would be that in this setting my camera is not suitable for the rapid changes in lighting. 10 Years would be less difficult than I expected, but the strong use of blue lights made this give me too many similar ones. Mudvayne is always a pain to shoot since they do not stand still much for the time we are allowed to shoot photos of them and Korn, well none of the cool visual stuff happened until we were not able to be in the photo pit. Still, I made due and hoped my little Olympus would do me some good like he has at so many club shows. The devices used by the professionals all around me gave me a fair amount of technical envy, yet at the end of the night, it was still a blast.

Korn Set List:
1. It’s On
2. Clown
3. Divine
4. Love Song
5. Falling Away From Me
6. Souvenir
7. Here To Stay
8. Munky Interlude
9. Dirty
10. Liar
11. Counting On Me
12. Somebody, Someone
13. Throw Me Away
14. Shoots and Ladders
15. Need To/Lies/Make Me Bad/Thoughtless
16. ADIDAS/ Twist
17. Coming Undone
18. Got the Life
19. Tearjerker
20. Twisted Transistor – encore
21. Hypocrites – encore
22. Freak On a Leash – encore
23. Blind – encore

Official Web site: www.korn.com
Official Web site: www.mudvayne.com
Official Web site: www.10yearsmusic.com

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