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Rockstar Energy UPROAR Festival
Denver, CO


As the summer comes to an official end one of the most anticipated rock tours of 2013 came to Denver. The Rockstar Energy UPROAR Festival rolled into Fiddler's Green Amphitheater in Denver, CO on Sunday, September 1 for a full day of diverse rock.

The afternoon got off to a fast and energetic start with the young British band Charming Liars. After that, there were alternating bands playing one after another, only stoping for a teardown and set up with he next act. One of the bands that instantly caught my attention was the Chuck Shaffer Picture Show from Virginia. They won the 2012 UPROAR Festival Battle of the Bands, besting acts from 28 markets to land a spot on the 2013 UPROAR tour. They were a highlight of the side stages and of the entire festival. Other bands on the side stages that played solid sets were Middle Class Rutt, Danko Jones, and Beware of Darkness.

In addition to being a great place to be exposed to new talent, the side stages were also a good place to see some familiar faces in new bands. The Walking Papers is formed by ex-Guns N' Roses Duff McKagen and Jeff Angell (The Missionary Position) as well as Barrett Martin of Screaming Trees. They played a nice set of blues-based songs from their  self-titled album that was released in 2012. Next up on the opposite stage was the southern rock 70's outfit also consisting of a all-star lineup. The band consists of Jon Stevens (INXS) Richard Fortus, Frank Ferrer and Dizzy Reed from Guns N' Roses and Marco Mendoza (Thin Lizzy). They currently have a single "Fly" featured in the animated movie Planes.

After the two side stages wrapped up, Circa Survive was the first act to the play the main stage. Frontman Anthony Green is extremely intense when he performs and if you are lucky enough to get up close to see him, you will witness a psychedelic trippy ride through the music. He slowly maneuvers with the microphone around his body pausing then jerking when the songs change pace.

Second on the main stage were conceptual prog-rockers Coheed and Cambria. Frontman Claudio Sanchez with his hugemaine of hair blazed through a set of their signature metal/punk riffs. With such a dedicated fan base it was not hard to hear the fans singing and screaming back the lyrics.

Jane's Addiction were next up and took a more theatrical approach, infusing sex and fashion along with their alternative music. Perry Farnell came out wearing a top hat and coat and in the back was his wife Etty along with another stage mistress being lifted up on wires wearing burlesque costumes. The entire band, including the underrated guitarist Dave Navarro, was in fine form playing a pretty predicable - but spot-on - summer set that included hits "Been Caught Steeling", "Mountain Song", and "Jane Says". They also performed their new single "Soulmate".

Alice In Chains' signature grungy sludgy rock was a stark contrast to Jane's Addiction and proved to be a great compliment to close a night of amazing music. Accompanied by a huge stage with hanging LED screens, AIC performed an outstanding set that touched on just about every part of their catalog. Having just released their new album, The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here at the end of May, the two singles "Hollow" and "Stone" fit nicely in the set that included "Them Bones", "Man in the Box", and "Acid Bubble" from their 2009 comeback with William DuVall, Black Gives Way to Blue. William continues to take over vocals in the songs and provides his own interpretation while not trying to sound like Layne Staley. He also does a nice job of laying down the signature vocal harmonies Cantrell and Staley were so famous for. The night concluded with a trio of some of their best hits as "Down in a Hole", "No Excuses", and "Would?" as Alice In Chains perfectly closed out this year's UPROAR.

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