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The Jägermeister Music Tour
(hed) Planet Earth & Saliva
March 7th, 2003
Roseland Ballroom - New York City, NY

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Senior Editor/ Reviewer
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(hed) Planet Earth

I am going to admit right up front that I missed the first few songs of (hed) Planet Earth's set, as well as the three bands that preceded them on March 7, 2003 at the Roseland Ballroom in New York City. However, I can say with complete confidence that (hed) P.E.'s set rose above the other bands and shined as the star of the Jägermeister Music Tour this year. Sadly, (hed) P.E. was only the co-headliner that night, sharing the bill with Nü-metal heavy hitter Saliva. This is not the first show, and unfortunately probably not the last, where the first of the two co-headliners walks away with the gold star for outstanding performance of the night, leaving the closing band with the duty of handling sloppy seconds. But as the story goes: "Ya win some, ya lose some."

Due to the sad state of corporate "modern rock" and "active rock" radio stations, as well as the very limited presence of any heavy music on MTV, many may be lead to believe that "rock is dead" (to steal from one of the few remaining good heavy artists). Attempting to put together a metal package tour, especially one with out any of the remaining "big" names in rock, you aren't guaranteed much in the way of quality, as well as turnout, but Jägermeister, the symbol of all that is intoxicated, gave it a try for the second consecutive year. The floundering support from all the usual venues; radio, press, and television was clearly visible in the disproportionately empty Roseland. I'm not saying there wasn't a crowd at all, and I'm also not saying that the crowd that was there wasn't there for the right reasons, it is just that there weren't a whole lot of people there, given the relatively large size of Roseland.

Either way, what I did manage to see of (hed) P.E.'s set was done in typical (hed) style: insanity. Simply put this band rocks, they have always rocked. It just isn't something that this band can perform without doing. Granted, they are one of the left over bands from the rap-metal movement a few years ago, but that's okay because this band did it better before, and they are continuing to do it extremely well. Their set included a mix of tracks from their three albums. Some of the particular highlights came from 2000's Broke, "Bartender," "Feel Good," and "Crazy Legs" all got the crowd going in the pit, which was unanimously encouraged by the band, because after all the show was for their "dawgs in the pit." One track that might not have been expected (or necessarily recognized) was an interlude included an apparently emotional cover of Bob Marley's "No Woman, No Cry." (hed) Planet Earth closed their set with their new single "Blackout" off of their new album by the same name.

(hed) P.E. live is an experience that everyone, whether you like metal or not, show try to see. Lead singer Jahred takes control of not only the stage but also the pit, which he appears to reign over like god feeding off the energy the pit throws back at him. His presence is only overshadowed by the insanity of the band's man in charge of the turn tables and samples, DJ Product 1969©. Most DJs just sit behind their kit, almost like a drummer, and stay kind of in the shadows, leaving most of the audience to wonder if they are actually doing anything. DJ Product 1969© manages to make his presence very well known onstage, but that is something you need to see for yourself. One of the other signs that this band has a particular flare to it is the fact that they are respected by other bands in the field, a few members of the New Jersey electrorock outfit PT Grimm were spotted spending sometime in the pit.

Overall, I'm going to say that (hed) P.E. do sound better on their albums, in comparison to their live performance, however, I'm not saying sit home and listen to 1997's (hed)P.E. instead of going to their show. You see; it is impossible to recreate on their albums the raw energy that the band exudes live onstage. Their sound on their albums is just a little more polished, and overall, easier on the ears. For all those that are interested in continuing listening to a dying genre or for anyone that wants to hear something a little left of center, (hed) Planet Earth are for you. Maybe Blackout will bring them to the mainstream and reignite some of the lost interest that has been seen lately in metal.

Saliva

Following (hed) P.E. on stage were perhaps one of the reasons why people are losing interest in metal; Saliva. They proved the fact that no matter how much you dress up your act, if you don't have the talent behind it, it's just not worth it. They opened with one of the singles off of their major label debut album Every Six Seconds, "Click Click Boom," and it pretty much went all downhill from there. Saliva is kind of the epitome of the Ozzfest/nü-metalhead/redneck kind of music that, outside of its' devout few fans, never really catches on. The closest thing this band has to a decent claim to fame was the lead singer Josey Scott played guitar (yeah the cross over there doesn't really make sense) on that Spiderman track "Hero" that was in constant rotation all summer. Aside from the outstanding light show that went on for their entire set, they could have just played the same song over and over, and it still pretty much would have been the same show I saw. This is one band you may want to take a pass on if you can.

So let's recap: (hed) P.E. - Good, Saliva - Bad. That's pretty much all it comes down to. I highly recommend keeping an eye out for (hed) Planet Earth in the coming months; this very much could be their time to explode.


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