To kick off this profoundly anticipated tour they’ve brought along with them Madball, New York hardcore punk who come cruising out onto the stage and appear menacing from the off. Singer Freddy, despite a lack of support from the crowd rallies them up and brings a little justice to their set commanding who dares to listen whilst running here, there and everywhere. They’ve still got a thing or two to show the younger bands.
I don’t think there’s a person in this room who isn’t slightly excited to see Limp Bizkit live, whether it’s that one hit or seeing an entire arena go completely insane because it’s just one of those shows where you need to let loose and have some fun.
Livin’ It Up sees Fred pull a random, incredibly enthusiastic and fearless fan up on stage to sing the last third of the song, which they do together perfectly. “This one’s just for you” smirks Fred as mid set sees them play Rearranged for the first time in quite some time. Limp Bizkit have kept their set pretty similar each night so it’s an extra little treat to hear something different that’s also potentially quite risky to a wasted Welsh crowd but it works as the outro sends the venue into a turmoil.
Fred’s vocals come off stronger than previous tours and despite the rest of the band fading into the background due to the arenas acoustics they still all pull together firmly. The arena can be a mix for bands and unfortunately tonight it doesn’t bring out the best sound but that doesn’t stop fans going for it like it’s their last night on earth. Many around are exhausted already. We witness beer flung from balconies, the I’ve-drunk-too-much-guy throwing up in a bin, a magnitude of rowdiness, girls partying side of stage, pits among pits and a somewhat awesome 7 year old on mums shoulders head banging better than most young ones here. What more could you really expect from a Limp Bizkit show? It’s made up for their last Cardiff performance which came across quite poor as Fred talked through half the set but tonight he’s perfected the timings and brought out the best in the crowd, even spending Counterfeit amidst the adoring front row.
The unfortunate thing that follows Limp Bizkit around like a dark cloud is the feeling of nostalgia. Many are here to see the band purely for that reason – to feel young again, replicate their teenage year shenanigans, but in hindsight, it’s also a good thing. We need that throw back every now and again, no matter how cliche it comes across, we’ve all had fun and that’s all that matters tonight.
The last time I saw Korn headline the arena it was pretty empty and must have been a pretty sore sight to play to. High ticket prices and a troublesome few years hit them pretty hard but in recent years, most recently seen supporting Slipknot they have been utterly mind blowing and their performance tonight should be no different. Although even higher ticket prices for this tour put many off the venue is packed and ready to rumble.
Kicking it off late with Right Now they band ooze confidence from the get go. “I’m so happy we can all come together … nothing counts but having a good fucking time” screams an ecstatic Jonathan Davis.
Apparently, hip hop interludes at nu-metal shows is the norm days as they break the set up to allow Davis to prepare for easily the most notable spectacle of the night, the intro bag pipes to Shoots and Ladders. Another hairs-on-end moment as nostalgia comes swinging back. With ‘live’ a new thing on Instagram and Facebook these days I’m made to watch through a wall of phones live streaming to their friends. A brief moment makes me ponder if he ever gets bored of playing them but it’s become so much apart of their set piece to not do it would be criminal.
No matter how many times I hear that bass line drop at the start of Blind it will always send shivers down my spine. The anticipation, knowing the venue is about to go into overdrive, knowing what mania is about to happen and it never, ever disappoints.
To celebrate Life Is Peachy being 20 years old they play Good God which sees Davis split the crowd down the middle that practically starts from the barrier to the sound desk. It’s pretty impressive to see so many fans of all different ages care for band 20 years on.
Seeing them support Slipknot there was a sense of pride to earn their place, to make their mark – tonight they did just that and more and despite their experimental years it’s a credit to see the band back where they want to be, with new music that boasts of a new era for Korn. It’s been an incredible night of nostalgia and passion from everyone.
KornWith Limp Bizkit and Madball.
Cardiff Motorpoint Arena - 16th December 2016
Photographer: Nadine Ballantyne - www.nadineballantyne.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nadineballantynephotography/