My wife just celebrated her birthday. Being the terrible husband that I am, I got her a gift that was kind of a gift for me as well: Concert tickets. Not just any concert tickets, these were tickets to see three of my favorite bands, which just happen to be on her concert bucket list.
On Saturday, we went to see Incubus at Lakewood Amphitheatre in Atlanta. On Sunday, we saw Avenged Sevenfold and Metallica at SunTrust Park, home of the Cobb County Braves (formerly the Atlanta Braves).
The park was nice enough. It’s very busy with many different levels and activities, all kinds of things to distract you from actual baseball. Anyone who’s been paying attention to the Braves this season knows why this is important. If you plan on visiting the stadium, leave very early. Traffic getting in and out of that new stadium is a nightmare. It makes driving through Grovetown seem like a trip down the Autobahn.
Anyway, it was great to see some live rock music. Since the loss of 95 Rock, we have been in a live rock deficit here in Augusta. The Avenged Sevenfold and Metallica show was six hours of rock therapy filled with everything you want from a rock show: loud music, face-melting guitar solos, filthy language and fire! Lots of fire!
The 70,000 people in attendance seemed to feel the same. I found myself wondering just how much money this tour makes per show.
With ticket prices of $150 and up, I’d say Metallica and company aren’t doing too bad. The Incubus show was packed, as well. We even ran into a guy taking his young son to his first rock show. As a dad, I might say that was the coolest thing I saw all weekend. I’d also say that there’s hope for rock music yet. Yes, Atlanta is a much bigger market than Augusta but, they have four rock stations. So, who knows? Maybe they’ll let us borrow one.
I remember thinking recently that it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a rock band that just blew me away the way either of these bands did when I first heard them. And I’ll admit that I haven’t been paying close attention. I stay distracted with the Chainsmokers and the Justin Biebers of the world. What can I say? It pays the bills. But, maybe that’s what’s wrong with the genre: all the good music is behind us.
Alas, I’ve recently discovered a band called Greta Van Fleet. The band is made up of three young brothers and an odd-man-out drummer. These kids sound like a mix between Led Zeppelin and Cage The Elephant. Seriously.
Listen to their song, “Highway Tune,” and you’ll be hooked. It has a guitar solo, for crying out loud! How many new rock bands even do those anymore? It’s a fresh sound that I think rock has needed for a while. I’m hoping it’s a sign of things to come for the genre.
So, keep hope alive, Augusta rock fans. I know I am.