New Jersey Metal and Hardcore Festival - November 14 & 15, 2003 - Back

Asbury Park’s Convention Hall
Asbury Park, NJ
The endless metal weekend has taken place, and the bands tore it up. In my opinion the New Jersey Metal and Hardcore Festival was more than a success, this was an assault on the brains of the masses. All the bands that I saw played with prestige and intensity unmatched by any previous metal festival in the United States.

Highlights on the weekend included a host of bands for me. Moonspell played an amazing thirty-minute set, which included “Opium,” “Alma Mater,” and a horde of other gems by the band. They were my favorite band of the weekend. The set list they played, their stage presence and that it was the first time I have had a chance to see them are the main reason behind that decision.

Morbid Angel have been masters of death metal for years, and they showcased their talents on stage in Asbury Park. I have seen them about a half dozen times before, but this weekend was the first time I have seen them play “God of Emptiness” and “Where the Slime Live,” both are favorites of mine. “Rapture” and “Bil Ur-Sag” was also a part of their performance.

Many other bands got the pits moving including Dimmu Borgir, Suffocation, Nile, Nevermore, Biohazard, Strapping Young Lad and The Black Dahlia Murder.

If you went to this Festival only knowing the more well know songs by bands, your blood would have boiled when you heard Hypocrisy ending with “Roswell 47” and Cradle of Filth playing “Malice Through the Looking Glass.”

Type O Negative came out in prison jumpsuits and opened with an Elvis cover, “Jailhouse Rock.” “Black No. 1,” “I Don't Wanna Be Me,” and many other songs from their library. These guys were also one of the better bands during the weekend.

Since Deicide’s songs aren’t to long they got to play an assortment of classics including “Dead But Dreaming,” “Once Upon the Cross,” “When Satan Rules His World,” “Serpents of the Light”, “Bible Basher” and much more blasphemy.

This show had the best quality of bands crossed with great sets, and endless songs to headbang to. All they need now is a better location for the show, and better hotel. I had an interesting forty-five minute entrapment in their elevator, a couple interesting conversations with the hotel employees and a false fire alarm to ruin my hotel experience there. But the hotel is my only real complaint of the weekend. The sound was decent, but the reverb was out of control a few times. To the surprise of me, the amount of people was less than I expected, but it was beneficial to everyone who went.

I would definitely like to see this show continue in the future. Hopefully the few kinks will be worked out for next year. What more can you say then, even though this was the first year for the fest, it was still the best damn festival to ever be organized in America, if not the whole Western Hemisphere. Good job to all involved and a special thanks to Debbie Sellnow at Mazur Entertainment/Public Relations, Inc. Until next Festival…METAL!!!

Rating: 98

Reviewed By: Jeffrey D, Adkins


New Jersey Metal and Hardcore Festival Preview

Over that last twenty years metal has had it ups and downs in America. The last few years metal seems to be coming back stronger then ever, with even more sub-genres coming to the front of the scene. This November, metal warriors will congregate in Asbury Park, NJ for a show that finally rivals European metal festivals, such as the Wacken Open Air Festival. With the help of the people from MassConcerts (creators of the New England Metal and Hardcore Festival) along with all the bands and supporters, this will be the best show every to grace the United States. The New Jersey Metal and Hardcore Festival is certain to smash some skulls and spill some blood.

The amount of headliners for this two-day festival is astounding. If you took the headliners of either the Friday or Saturday date of the show, that would surpass just about every other metal festival in the US, but there are TWO days of this mayhem! Currently the headliners include: Danzig, Superjoint Ritual, Morbid Angel, Dimmu Borgir, Nevermore, Children Of Bodom, Hypocrisy, Strapping Young Lad and Symphony X headline the show on Friday. Cradle Of Filth, Type O Negative, Nile, Deicide, Suffocation, Hate Eternal, Biohazard, Moonspell and Mastodon headline on Saturday. And that is just the headliners, other bands that will be there include: Unearth, Krisiun, Bongzilla, Diabolic, The Red Chord, A Life Once Lost, Premonitions Of War, Cannae, Between The Buried And Me, All That Remains, Dysrhythmia, Lick Golden Sky, Byzantine, Eyes Of Fire, Full Blown Chaos, With Honor, Subzero, Between The Buried And Me, The End, Watch Them Die, Withered Earth, Novembers Doom, Crematorium, Wasteform, Misery Index, Mastodon, Most Precious Blood, The Takeover, Beyond The Embrace, The Black Dahlia Murder, Bleeding Through, The Killing, Daughters, Held Under, Embrace Today, Traumacide, Human Decline, A Perfect Murder, Scarlet, All Out War, Super Villian, Sinai Beach, Scar Culture, Mortician, The Agony Scene, Across Five Aprils, Malignancy, Backstabbers Incorporated, Fleshgrind, Remembering Never, Dew Scented, Devil Driver, The Devin Townsend Band, Cattle Decapitation, Today Is The Day, plus more to be announced. The caliper of this metal show is simply amazing; I dare someone to try to top this.

There will also be record labels, vendors, and record distributors at the fest. So you can see a new band or a favorite of yours, and then go buy their latest CD or t-shirt. With vendors such as Revolver Magazine, Metal Maniacs Magazine, Metal Blade Records, Emetic Records, The End Records, Prosthetic Records, Victory Records, Leviathan / AK Press, SOD Magazine and Earache Records the selection of merchandise will best just about any music store.

Sponsors are what really make this show possible, and a selection of metal friendly industry such as Revolver Magazine, Relapse Records, Metal Maniacs Magazine, The Aquarian, Mazur PR, The Syndicate, Full Contact Magazine, WSOU, WDHA, and WRAT will help festivals like this to keep going for years to come.

The New Jersey Metal and Hardcore Fest will be held at Asbury Park's Convention Hall on Friday, November 14 at 3:00PM and Saturday, November 15 at 12 Noon. Asbury park will sure to be alive with metal brethren for over 2 days during this extreme weekend.

Friday individual day tickets are $40. Saturday individual day tickets are $45. Two-day tickets are $75. There will also be a SPECIAL two-day event pass that Includes event poster, event t-shirt, commemorative festival laminate, CD sampler, VIP entrance and special VIP area and it costs $150. Tickets are available NOW at , all ticketmaster locations or at Vintage Vinyl in Fords, NJ. To charge tickets by phone, call Ticketmaster at (201) 507-8900 or (609) 520-8383.

So, to all metal heads that want to prove how metal you really are, get off your ass and come to the New Jersey Metal and Hardcore Festival and smash heads with me, “Metal Jeff,” …I will be in the pit!!!!