Rock am Ring came to an end on Sunday with headline performances from Foo Fighters and Slipknot. Read on to see what went down in Mendig on the final day of an extremely successful edition.
Papa Roach took to the Beck’s Crater Stage during the early afternoon, running on stage with their fists in the air as they kicked into recent track F.E.A.R. (Face Everything and Rise). Older hits Last Resort, Scars and Lifeline all featured predominantly with new album F.E.A.R. hardly getting a look in (only two songs from the record were played). Frontman Jacoby Shaddix interacted a lot with the crowd, spending part of the show offstage and running across the front barrier.
Indie pop group Bastille don’t necessarily fit the target demographic of your average Rock am Ring, so their booking was rather surprising to some. However, this didn’t stop the radio friendly quartet from putting on a fantastic show for a huge crowd. Smash hits Things We Lost in the Fire, Pompeii and Of the Night all featured alongside older demos, debut album cuts and new songs from their hotly anticipated second album.
Australian metalcore giants Parkway Drive later put on an incredible show over on the Beck’s Crater Stage. Having just put out their new, more anthemic single Vice Grip, the Winston McCall-fronted band opened their Mendig set with older cut Wild Eyes. Confetti cannons exploded once the song kicked in, with McCall evidently very happy as he smiled and screamed his way through the set. The crowd was large, with many people singing (read: faux grunting) along at the tops of their voices. A few moshpits and crowdsurfers appeared, partly giving testament to the way that Parkway Drive put on a show. The Brisbane group don’t just play a gig, they put on a spectacle complete with confetti, c02 and plenty of fire. Upcoming record Ire just can’t come soon enough.
Foo Fighters had the honour of bringing the Seat Volcano Stage to a close for Rock am Ring’s 30th anniversary. Their set, which included a massive production encompassing a 100m long catwalk and revolving stage on said catwalk, spanned nearly three hours and 28 songs long. The show started when Dave Grohl ran onstage and simply shouted, “Are you ready? Are you fucking ready? Because it’s gonna be a long fucking night”. His bandmates (bassist Nate Mendel, guitarists Pat Smear and Chris Shiflett, and drummer Taylor Hawkins) all proceeded to follow him as they kicked straight into the powerful Everlong. Birthday boy and Eagles of Death Metal guitarist Dave Cathing was invited onto the circular stage to perform a cover of the The Faces’ Stay With Me, with the whole crowd singing Happy Birthday to him beforehand. Foo Fighters’ shows tend to function in a certain manner: a handful of songs, followed by a mini speech by Dave Grohl. The frontman, often declared to be the nicest man in rock, made plenty of inspirational speeches during the show, only adding to the epic level this band operate on. Even if Grohl sometimes falls behind vocally, it doesn’t matter. As Grohl himself would agree – it’s rock music, and we wouldn’t want the Foo’s any other way.
The burning question of today – will Motorhead play? Frontman Lemmy is now 70 years old, and he’s been known to cancels shows just an hour before they’re due to start. Luckily this wasn’t the case in Mendig, with the band sub-headlining Slipknot on the Beck’s Crater Stage. The crowd was smaller due to Foo Fighters’ Seat Volcano Stage set, yet the people that were present were definitely there for Motorhead. Diehards, as some people call them. Weirdos, as others may describe them. During the show you could see that Lemmy wasn’t enjoying the idea of standing onstage in front of all those people, looking seemingly bored for the duration of their show. Whenever he spoke into the microphone it was inaudible, meaning that guitarist Phil Campbell was compelled to repeat everything. Overall it was a mediocre show.
The Beck’s Crater Stage was headlined by legendary metallers Slipknot, utilizing an amazing stage production for their show. The stage featured a massive satanic goat head towering over the band, whose various members were seen on hydraulic risers as they pounded on percussive instruments or mixed some vinyl on a DJ deck. The band kicked off their set with XIX, from new album .5: The Gray Chapter. Everything came together seamlessly during the show, from the costumes to stage production and the all-important music. Even without the added bells and whistles they would still put on a great show, something in part down to Corey Taylor’s flawless live voice. They absolutely destroyed the Crater stage, launching a figurative crater into the spellbound audience by the end of the show.
With a fantastic edition of Rock am Ring now well and truly over, the countdown starts until we hear who will perform in Mendig on the 3rd, 4th and 5th of June 2016. Rumours are rife, with Radiohead, U2, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam all favourites. All Things Loud hopes to bring you coverage of Rock am Ring 2016, but for now you can find all our 2015 coverage over on Facebook.