Live: Louder Than Life 2017

Every May, we’re blessed with what is now known as The World’s Loudest Month. This is the month where numerous rock festivals pop up- Rock On The Range, Carolina Rebellion, Kansas City Rockfest, Northern Invasion, Fort Rock and Welcome to Rockville are just a few of them.

This year saw the fourth installment of Louisville’s Louder Than Life Festival with many people are saying it was the best one so far- with over 60,000 fans in attendance over two days, it was definitely the most successful.

With headliners Ozzy Osbourne and Prophets of Rage rounding off each night, it was definitely a Louder Than Life you’d be sorry to miss and we’re proud to bring you our photo coverage and interview coverage of each day.

Day One Highlights:

Through Fire- One of the younger bands on the festival. Three singles deep into their debut- Breathe, they took the stage with extreme confidence and dominated the crowd, raising the bar early for the rest of the day.

DED- One of the hottest- if not the hottest band of the summer in their genre. They got up close and personal with the crowd and knew exactly how to hold the fans in the palm of their hand and command their every move. They proved why they have some of the biggest hits of the year.

He Is Legend- You’d never believe these guys don’t have a major label. They’re one of the most energetic, charismatic and fun-to-watch bands you’ll find. They know what it takes to make a lasting impression and they definitely left the stage with people talking.

Steel Panther- Is there any explanation needed? This band is one of the most entertaining bands you’ll see anywhere. Their banter back and forth on stage is as offensive as it is funny and they know exactly what they need to do to win over the crowd. They were by far one of the best of the weekend.

Eagles of Death Metal- A lot of people were intrigued by Eagles being on the bill from the start and there was a lot of buzz this day. They lived up to every expectation and even brought Brent Hinds from Mastodon on stage for the first few songs. They were just fun to watch and blew everyone away. They were definitely in the running for band of the day.

Hollywood Undead- It was party time when HU took the stage. They know exactly how to take the energy in the room and crank it all the way up. You can’t watch Hollywood Undead and not have a good time- it’s impossible. Their stage was set up with palm trees and sparks flying around the air and the crowd was the most animated they’d been up to this point.

Gojira- Sirius XM Octane’s Jose Mangin stomped his way to the front of the stage to introduce Gojira and the crowd erupted as soon as they realized who was taking the stage. Gojira have been on a huge popularity rise lately and it showed at Louder Than Life. When a band and the crowd are on the same page it makes for something special and that’s what Gojira’s set was.

Halestorm- You usually know what you’re going to get with a Halestorm set if you’ve seen them before. With a new album coming soon, this was a set where they gave the fans the final taste of Halestorm before returning with new music. Nonetheless, they delivered in every way.

Rob Zombie- What can be said about Rob Zombie that hasn’t already? Hit songs, monsters, robots, alien sex balloons and more- seriously, what else could you possibly want? Honestly, he should have gone on after Five Finger Death Punch instead of before- we’re still scratching our heads on that one.

Five Finger Death Punch- There was a lot of buzz and interest in their set due to Ivan Moody being fresh out of rehab. He’d only been back on the road for a few months and a lot of fans were eager to see how things went. While it was the same set as the band had played virtually every other single show, there was still a special “something” about it and fans were left satisfied.

Ozzy Osbourne- Probably the sole reason this was the highest-selling Louder Than Life in the festival’s four-year existence. Ozzy has been playing numerous festivals this year and he was obviously elated and excited to be playing the festival. He didn’t sound amazing and his voice was cracking from time to time but he still delivered a set that you’d be proud to say you were there for.

At the end of Day 1, this year’s Louder Than Life was already off to one hell of a start and had surpassed every previous year- and we were only halfway done.

Day Two Highlights:

Joyous Wolf- Talk about energetic and memorable. They kicked off the Main Stage and a lot of people who were there for the set were probably there early to make sure they got a good spot for the later bands, but they were in for a treat. Joyous Wolf is one of the best young bands in rock today and they made sure fans knew it. With frontman Nick moving around like a man possessed- doing handstands, dancing and strutting around the stage, this was the best way to start off day 2.

Greta Van Fleet- These guys were on almost everyone’s watch list for the day. They’ve been called the second coming of Led Zeppelin so the pressure was on and the intrigue was high. They did more than deliver- they made sure everyone there left a fan and knew exactly who they were.

Lacuna Coil- This was one of the bands on the bill that most people wanted to make sure they made their way down to the Zorn Stage to check out and they honestly should have been playing one of the two main stages. Their set was as powerful as it was theatrical and the double vocalist attack of Andrea Ferro and Cristina Scabbia is just hypnotizing.

Nothing More- With a new record out and a new stage prop in The Scorpion (pictured in the gallery link below), the buzz was through the roof for Nothing More and they were able to back it up. The emotion was real and the energy coming from the crowd was indescribable.

Stone Sour- Corey Taylor was making his return to Louder Than Life- playing it last year with Slipknot, he remembered the Louisville crowd and he made sure they knew it too. They played a short set that still managed to throw in the fan favorites as well as the songs from new album Hydrograd they wanted to include as well. With only a few bands left on the day, Stone Sour made sure the crowd brought their A game and commanded nothing short of it.

Prophets of Rage- Can you ask for a better way to close out a festival? If you think about it, Prophets of Rage has the aspects of five bands within it- Rage Against The Machine, Audioslave, Public Enemy and Cypress Hill- and we got songs from each band. Capping off the weekend, Prophets made sure the fans left all their energy behind- classics from RATM were the definite highlight and the crowd jumping and mosh pits escalated to the most intense of the weekend with “Bulls on Parade” and “Killing in the Name.”

The two most important moments of the entire weekend came with this set. Not only did Prophets bring out members of Rise Against for a song but they took a moment to remember fallen Soundgarden/Audioslave singer Chris Cornell for a moving rendition of “Like A Stone” where the band members played but let the crowd sing the lyrics.

In the end, 2017 saw the most successful and best Louder Than Life thus far. The crowd, the bands, the food, everything was a vast improvement. The festival was moved up a week to September 30-October 1, which did nothing but help. The weather was better and warmer and Louder Than Life fell exactly one week after the inaugural Bourbon & Beyond, which was also at Champions Park.

With the two festivals happening back to back at the same venue, Louisville has the potential to become one of the strongest rock and metal cities in the United States.

We appreciate all that Danny Wimmer Presents does for rock and metal and we look forward to the 2018 festival season.

-Reggie Edwards

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