Photos and Words by Jose Serrato
Rob Zombie brought his Freaks on Parade Tour into Panther City on Saturday night. Typically a tour of this size will make its stop in Dallas, but Dickies Arena in Fort Worth has been bringing in more and more big name acts. Which is great news for this concert goer. A 5 minute drive to the venue is a lot better than a 45 minute drive in I-30 traffic. Zombie assembled a lineup that took me back to the 90’s and early 00’s. Seemed to be an intentional move by Zombie as he later mentioned during his set how great the 90’s actually were in comparison to our current state. Possibly another clue would be the song “1999” by Prince being played as the lights went dark and Zombie & crew were ready to take the stage. The lineup that made thousands of metal fans excited included Mudvayne, Static-X and Powerman 5000. Every band did their part to not disappoint the crowd.
It’s been nearly 8 years since the passing of Wayne Static, but his band Static-X have continued to release music and tour with new vocalist Xer0. There has been much speculation as to who Xer0 actually is, but we don’t know as he takes the stage wearing a mask resembling Wayne. Creepy? Of course. It completely fits the this band to be a bit morbid. 6 of the 7 songs performed were from the 1999 album Wisconsin Death Trip. An album that even 23 years after its release is still a fan favorite.
It was now time for what seemed to be the most anticipated set by many around me. After an 11 year hiatus, Mudvayne reunited last year for a hand full of festival shows and were now co-headlining the Freaks on Parade Tour. It has been 21 years since I last saw Mudvayne perform at Deep Ellum Live in Dallas. So I too was excited to see them on stage once again. A black curtain was hung in front of the stage with the Mudvayne logo on it. The curtain fell to the one song that seemed perfect to reintroduce the band to their fans, “Dig.” Vocalist Chad Gray wasted no time to come down off the stage and into the arms of the crowd. You can see the joy in both Gray and his fans to be back together again. After ripping through tracks off their debut album, L.D. 50, the band walked off stage and a video began to play on the backdrop. “Cowboys From Hell” blasted out the speakers and a tribute video to local metal legend Dimebag began with a giant roar from the crowd. “How did we end up here on his birthday…” said Gray. Yes, these metal bands were in the hometown of Pantera’s Dimebag Darrell on his birthday. It couldn’t have worked out any better.
Video screens are being put in place and a tall platform with he name Zombie on it is rolled out to center stage. The master at creating elaborate stage setups is about to give us life long memories. I’ve tried to describe Rob Zombie concerts before and the only way I can explain it is by saying it’s crazy and amazing. This night, the show was crazy and amazing. From big balloons tossed around the crowd to a giant devil and alien walking across the stage, it’s a show you just need to experience yourself. Guitarist John 5 once again joined Zombie on tour as he has since 2005. One of the best vocalist/guitarist pairings in music. The band lined up a 15 song setlist that included video clips of Zombie’s movies. During a break, a trailer was played for his new movie The Munsters which is coming out next month. Fan favorite “Dragula” started up and I knew this would be the closer. Zombie and crew gave it their all and the crowd gave it back. The pit was alive all night and the cheers were loud. If you haven’t had the pleasure of seeing any of these bands live, make it a priority next time around. It’s definitely worth the high Ticketmaster fees.