Headbanger’s holiday

Five must-mosh bands at Aftershock 2019

Slipknot headlines Aftershock on Friday, on the heels of its sixth album, <i>We Are Not Your Kind</i>, released in August.

Slipknot headlines Aftershock on Friday, on the heels of its sixth album, We Are Not Your Kind, released in August.

Photo courtesy of Paul Harries

Check out Aftershock Friday through Sunday, Oct. 11-13. Tickets range from $120 to $350. Sunday is sold out. For tickets and festival info, visit aftershockfestival.com.

As the final power chords ring and the last clouds of vape smoke dissipate by the banks of the Sacramento River, Aftershock 2019 may have made local history.

The three-day extravaganza of hard rock, heavy metal and a few musical twists goes down at Discovery Park Friday through Sunday, Oct. 11-13. More than 30,000 people are expected per day, with a total attendance of about 90,000.

Those numbers could make Aftershock 2019 the largest musical event in Sacramento history. That honor previously went to the former Sacramento Dixieland Jazz Jubilee, which at its peak in the 1980s drew about 85,000 over a four-day Labor Day weekend.

Those days of banjos and washboards are long gone. Now, it’s about flying V guitars, mosh pits and a heavy metal nation that descends on Sacramento.

Aftershock, which started as a single-day event in 2012, makes its first run as a three-day festival this year. It features two of the biggest names not just in hard rock, but contemporary music. Headliners Slipknot and Tool each released chart-topping albums recently, bumping the likes of Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift.

Heavy metal and hard rock are in some of its most robust years in recent memory, and Aftershock is ready to rally the community with a sea of devil-horned salutes. More than 50 bands—legacy acts and up-and-comers—will perform on three stages.

Here’s a guide to five of the must-mosh bands at Aftershock:

Tool: A slam dunk, with Aftershock marking the first live show for Tool since its chart-topping album Fear Innoculum was released in late August. Judging by its Aftershock appearance in 2016, Tool’s set is likely to be as sonically heavy and dense as it is visually stunning.

Fishbone: While not of the chunka-chunka metal variety, these ska-punk pioneers have been known to start plenty of burly mosh pits on their own. They rose in Southern California’s punk scene in the ’80s and still play with a manic energy that rivals your favorite heavy metal shredders.

Slipknot: The mosh pits during their 2015 headlining set nearly left crop circles in the grass at Gibson Ranch, Aftershock’s home that year. Expect more of the same with Slipknot performing on the heels of We Are Not Your Kind, the band’s first studio album in five years.

Knocked Loose: The metalcore band Code Orange boosted its local fan base after its ferocious 2017 Aftershock set. Knocked Loose, a band from Kentucky, is next as Aftershock’s up-and-comer to see, with a manic energy that bridges hardcore and metalcore poundage. If you’ve got some issues to work out, this is the band to see.

The Crystal Method: Aftershock does well by throwing a left-field act into the mix of metal and rock. The Crystal Method’s electronic music comes primarily from the digital realm, but its hella big beats and bass can still pump up any heshers who need an energy boost.