LAS RAGEOUS HITS SIN CITY!
The second annual LAS RAGEOUS music festival is in the books now after taking place on April 20th and 21st, 2018 at the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center. By all accounts the festival was a huge success, topping the inaugural festivities of last year in both the size of the crowd and the acts. Vegas Strong was a theme that was evident throughout, as this was the largest outdoor festival of its kind since the tragic shooting at the Route 91 Harvest
Festival last year. There were public safety announcements on the big screen all day from Las Vegas local Chris Kael of Five Finger Death Punch as well as several acknowledgments from the bands themselves as to just how strong Vegas is today and
Day one of Las Rageous may have been considered the warm up day with not as many huge name acts, but boy did they deliver and prove they all could more than hold their own with day two. If you are looking
for that wow moment of the day it had to be when local boys OTHERWISE were on the stage and vocalist Adrian Patrick brought his young son up on the stage to help with some lyrics. I had a chance to catch up with the boys backstage and Adrian gave me the quote of the night when I asked him about the moment. Adrian replied “If it wasn’t for my two boys, I am sure I would be a statistic.” I also had a chance to catch up with Ashley Costello of NEW YEARS DAY before what turned out to be an incredible set. Ashley dropped a scoop on us when she explained that she will be going out in support of IN THIS MOMENT and HALESTORM on what is being billed as the “Witching Hour Tour”. Ashley’s scoop was that the tour has just been extended and will now include a Vegas date! This has not been announced yet, but Ashley said we could say “you heard it here first!” CLUTCH gave its die-hard fans exactly what they are used to, and the headliner for the evening, A PERFECT CIRCLE, did not disappoint anyone except the photographers as Maynard stayed in the back in the dark, which is his usual method of operation.how everyone has come together.
Day two of Las Rageous was billed as the one you couldn’t miss due to just how strong the line-up was top to bottom, and boy did it ever live up to the hype! The wow moment of day two definitely came when Glenn Tipton of JUDAS PRIEST, who stepped down due to his battle with Parkinson’s disease, joined the boys for what turned out to be three encores. Glen is only joining the legends on a few select shows throughout the country before he hangs it up for good. All of Las Vegas wishes Glenn the very best in his battle. I had the privilege, courtesy of Sally Steele who arranged all the interviews (thank you one more time Sally!), to sit down with Ian Hill and Ritchie Faulkner before the show. Ian told me that the first time he played Vegas was actually 1979 at the old Aladdin Theatre. Ritchie talked about his trip to Count’s Customs and how he hoped the surprise he was receiving was not going to be a car since he doesn’t have a driver’s License! Luckily, it turned out to be something he could use in a guitar! I also sat down with Biff Byford of SAXON who explained that festivals like this and the Monsters of Rock Cruise, for which SAXON has just announced, have helped SAXON gain resurgence in a fan base that may have not had a chance to see them otherwise. There was also a show stealing performance from local boys ADELITA’S WAY before the headliner FIVE FINGER
DEATH PUNCH took the stage. The newly sober Ivan Moody of FFDP sounded and looked better than I thought he had for years. Chris Kael has sort of become the local rock spokesman for Las Vegas as seen in his public service announcements and it showed throughout the amazing set as the fans really engaged him from start to finish.
Overall, the Las Rageous Festival can only be considered a huge success for year two. Vegas Strong has become a way of life, and this event only does more to help the city in its recovery process. Derrick Stevens and all of the festival organizers deserve nothing but praise for bringing us what now has to be considered probably the biggest rock event in Las Vegas each year. Year three will have some work to do if it plans on topping year two. Here is to not being able to wait to find out!
Special thanks to Ashley Di Buduo, Kristine Ashton-Magnuson and Kelly Frey for credentialing us for this event!
Photos: Paul ROCK Santos
Crowd Photo by Tom Donoghue