Hard rock music festival Aftershock returns bigger than ever

Chicago punk band Rise Against plays Sunday at Aftershock

Aftershock is back for a third year of head banging, mosh pits and all things hard rock on Sept. 13-14 at Discovery Park. After a complete sellout last year, the festival is going bigger: two days, four stages, 46 bands and more genres.

Just take its Saturday headliner: Weezer. And I’m not dissing Weezer—I still look back at the Blue Album fondly. Tenderly, even. But the nerdy, poppy rock band doesn’t exactly match up with Aftershock’s other, more expected headliners, like Godsmack, Rob Zombie, The Offspring, Five Finger Death Punch and so on.

Anyway, Weezer is releasing a new album on Oct. 7, Everything Will Be Alright In The End. It’s the band’s first since Hurley in 2010 as well as its first on Republic Records. Exciting for old Weezer fans, it’s being produced by Ric Ocasek, the man behind the Blue Album and Green Album. Pre-order and get an audio taste here.

The lineup is packed with bands touting other new releases. Metal band Godsmack’s sixth album 1000hp came out last month, along with punk band Rise Against’s The Black Market to rave reviews. Look for more on Rise Against’s politically charged sound in next week’s print SN&R.

Also of interest: South African post-grunge, metal band Seether dropped a new album earlier this summer. Heavy metal band Black Label Society released its ninth album, Catacombs of the Black Vatican, in the spring. Young Guns, a bit of a rock sensation in England right now, is preparing for its third album next year. Plus lots of younger bands with more eclectic influences—roots, electronic, Southern rock, rap.

Apart from the big names, I’m most excited—OK, mostly curious—to see Atreyu and Unlocking the Truth. Atreyu is, yes, that Atreyu, the metalcore band with huge radio hits “Becoming the Bull” and “Falling Down” back in 2007. Members went on an indefinite hiatus in 2011 and announced a big return in July. Can a band really come back if no one realized it had left? Regardless, Atreyu’s Facebook page had about 500,000 likes and then more than a million post-announcement, so apparently, people do care.

Unlocking the Truth is a whole different story though. The heavy metal band is made up of three black middle schoolers in Brooklyn. They were, naturally, the youngest musicians to play the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival this year. In July, the band signed a $1.7 million deal with Sony Records. Yeah. Read this piece in the New York Times.

Aftershock tickets are still on sale, single days for $64.50 and weekend passes for $109.50. Here’s the complete lineup, with performance times:

Saturday, September 13

Monster Main Stage 1
6:45 p.m. Limp Bizkit
5 p.m. Tech N9ne
3:30 p.m. Black Label Society
2:15 p.m. Hellyeah
1 p.m. Memphis May Fire
12 p.m. Anti-Mortem

Monster Main Stage 2
8:55 p.m.Weezer
5:50 p.m. AWOLNATION
4:05 p.m. Bad Religion
2:50 p.m. Pepper
1:35 p.m. Dead Sara
12:30 p.m.The Last Internationale

Monster Main Stage 3
7:50 p.m. The Offspring
5 p.m. Chevelle
3:30 p.m. Nothing More
2:15 p.m. Fuel
1 p.m. Sleepwave
12 p.m. Islander

Coors Light Stage
4:05 p.m. Butcher Babies
2:50 p.m. Emmure
1:35 p.m. Eyes Set To Kill
12:30 p.m. Viza
11:30 a.m. Dig The Kid

Sunday, September 14

Monster Main Stage 1
8:55 p.m. Godsmack
5 p.m. Seether
3:30 p.m. Theory of a Deadman
2:10 p.m. Black Stone Cherry
1 p.m. We Are Harlot
12 p.m. Escape The Fate

Monster Main Stage 2
7:50 p.m. Rob Zombie
5:50 p.m. Rise Against
4:15 p.m. Pennywise
2:50 p.m. Of Mice & Men
1:35 p.m. Atreyu
12:30 p.m. Otherwise

Monster Main Stage 3
6:45 p.m. Five Finger Death Punch
5 p.m. Mastodon
3:30 p.m. Buckcherry
2:10 p.m. We Came As Romans
1 p.m. KYNG
12 p.m. Young Guns

Coors Light Stage
4:15 p.m. Lacuna Coil
2:50 p.m. Unlocking The Truth
1:35 p.m. New Medicine
12:30 p.m. Burn Halo
11:30 p.m. Fallrise

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