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Metal, It's Worth It: A Defense of Rock The Bayou [8/27/2008 11:08:00 PM]:
From SCR Writer Scott Whitt: In a recent blog, our erstwhile leader showed extreme displeasure with the ticket prices for the Rock The Bayou fest (August 29th-September 1st). Jeremy stated that even though he was once a longhair ne'er-do-well, the price tag out weighs the chance to relive his youth. I want to show that even at $125, it's still a worthwhile deal. If you look at the amount of bands that are playing, it's mind-boggling. Every day there are 4 stages with someone on them. While some of them are local or regional favorites (Mighty Orq and Victim, just to name a few), the main stage is packed with bands that haven't played here for years.

Y&T -- c'mon, who doesn't love "Summertime Girls"? -- have reunited and will be making their only Houston appearance. Queensryche headlines on Friday, and if you see them at the Verizon you have to fork over at least $40 for them and maybe one other band.

Moving on to Saturday and the second stages, there is one of the best band names out there, Wolfeblitzer, and Vain. Vain is one of those bands that got lost in the shuffle when Seattle happened, and then the only way to get their stuff was to buy imports at Soundwaves.

On the main stage there's Dokken, whose latest album, Lightning Strikes Again, shows that they still have it after all these years. Plus, you may get to see the incredible weave that is Don Dokken's hair. Also, there's Lita Ford, who has not been seen in the States in a decade and still looks like she could kick your ass. For all those people that insist on listening to those crappy-sounding chick bands -- Le Tigre fans, I'm looking at you -- why not go see an artist that can actually play her instrument? The night is headlined by the Red Rocker himself, Sammy Hagar, another act that would cost you $40 to see him at the V.

Sunday is no day of rest, as legendary Houston metalers Helstar headline the Bud Light Lime stage. Most do not know of the legacy this band has left except for those of us that frequented Cardi's and Backstage. Of course, if you spent too much time at those places, you might not remember much yourself. Keeping it somewhat local, on the main stage there's Louisiana's Lillian Axe, back from an extended absence. After them is Austin's Dangerous Toys. I know what all you hipsters are thinking: yes, there is a metal band that dared to show it head in the land of pompous poseurs and burnt orange. Later there's Scandinavian fretboard wizard Yngwie J. Malmsteen. The "J" is to differentiate him from all the other Yngwie Malmsteens. Alone he would cost you $25 at The Meridian or Warehouse Live, not to mention that this way you can sing "I Am A Viking" in unison with 30k others. That night's headlined by Alice Cooper, but his last album sucked, and he's become a parody of what he once was.

Monday, the grand finale features Ultra Siberian Pant Factory. I have no idea what that is, but for coming up with a name like that, you should pay $125. The main stage features the chainsaw-wielding Jackyl. Where else can you see a band that uses power tools as an instrument and is actually white-trashier than their audience? The whole shindig gets wrapped up with rock frontman turned reality star Bret Michaels. Now, this could be a bad thing if some of those skanks turned "stars" show up. Of course, there will be plenty of female entertainers at the show, so at least there will be plenty of eye candy. Even if you hate his music with every fiber of your being, who doesn't like watching scantily-clad women dancing provocatively? By watching these ladies dance for free, you can save the money that you would normally spend at the Crystal Pistol or Pink Pussycat or whichever establishment you frequent.

Rock The Bayou was birthed out of the success of Rocklahoma, a similar festival in Pryor, Oklahoma. This year, its second event drew over 100k people. Think how many more people would come if was held here and not in Pryor, Oklahoma. If it wasn't for the concert, no one would have ever heard of Pryor, Oklahoma. People that live in Oklahoma don't want to live in Oklahoma.

Lastly, when was the last time you felt like you were 19 again? Several months ago friends and I went to see Iron Maiden. For two and a half hours, I felt like the denim jacket-wearing youth I once was. For the time of the show, you forgot how old you were, the car payments, mortgage, gas prices, bad jobs, fat wives, whiny kids, and all the realities of life. The $35 I spent on the ticket plus the $14 I spent on overpriced beer and another $10 I spent on gas to get to that venue that is seemingly just south of Dallas was worth it. Just think of the savings you get when seeing all those bands over four days at Rock The Bayou.

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