Revolver Golden God Awards 2016 –

Webster Hall, New York City, New York, Tuesday, December 13th, 2016

The first time I attended an award show hosted by Revolver Magazine I had accompanied an attendee in the host city of Los Angeles. This time Revolver decided to bring its rock music filled event to New York City’s Webster Hall. The Empire State crowds take their rock music seriously.

Their take no prisoner, “You had better prove your worth” attitude not only keeps artists on their toes but also has bands from Seattle to Miami flocking to book shows here. After all the saying goes “If you can make it here...” While I am a bi-coastal individual, I was born and raised in Bronx, NY and, for me; there is nothing like a gig played in front of my home city crowd.

The awards were hosted by Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine. As soon as his noticeable blonde head took the podium the previous restless crowd cheered. Mustaine manned the pulpit for the duration; or at least until his band took they stage later in the ceremony. His demeanor was cheerful; his handling of the nominations and announcement of presenters was professional and appreciative.

The awards were announced in between artist sets which allowed the show to progress with little interruption. The star studded presenter list brought Ace Frehley, Dave Lombardo, Norman Reedus and others to the lectern handing out awards to an assortment of receivers.

Set List: Finally Free/Catch Me When I Fall/Monster.

What most of the spectators awaited were the performances and there were plenty of those. The first to take the stage were Los Angeles natives, Stitched Up Heart. The band also set a precedent for the evening which including quite a few talented front ladies. Blonde bombshell, Alicia Demner, was more than just a pretty face; the pint sized lady can sing.

Set List: Blood, Tears, Dust/Our Truth/House Of Shame.

Milan, Italy was in the house with Lacuna Coil who followed up next. This was my first time seeing this band live and I was already intrigued hearing that they hail from the same city as my parents. The similarity to my folks ended here. Theatrical costumes aside, this is a tight, well oiled band. Lead vocalists, Cristina Scabbia and Andrea Ferro did not hold back and it was apparent there was a good deal of the bands’ fans in the crowd.

Set List: Caught in a Mosh/Breathing Lightning/Monster at the End/Indians.

One of the highlights were the addition of New York natives, Anthrax. I had not seen this band perform in many years, but I certainly wasn’t the only nostalgic fan, they haven’t missed a beat. Joey Belladonna exceeds as a front man. Scot Ian, who also was a classic familiar face and knows how to entice the crowd into frenzy. Their four song set ended with their classis ‘Indians’ off the Among the Living album.

Set List: Tornado Of Souls/The Threat Is Real/Dystopia/A Tout Le Monde (With Christina Scabbia)/Holy Wars.

Of course with Anthrax, one thinks of Megadeth in the same genre and we knew that Dave Mustaine was not planning on standing behind the pedestal all night. Megadeth was the last band to take the stage before several all star jams. With the longest set of the evening, this long standing band certainly met the audiences’ much awaited expectations.

Before performing ‘A Tout Le Monde’, Mustaine explained that he wondered how the song would flow as a duet. On cue, Christina Scabbia of Lacuna Coil sauntered on to the stage to join Mustaine front and center. Scabbia was the perfect candidate, to match Mustaine vocally.

Set List: The National Anthem/In This River.

Once the stage was cleared, guitar wizard and proficient vocalist, Zakk Wylde, took the stage to deliver two acoustic numbers. While Zakk is most known for his electric riffs alongside Ozzy Osbourne, he is also quite the vocalist.

The all star jam continued with members of The Butcher Babies, Bumblefoot, and an array of musicians, however, the man most were waiting for took the stage for the final set.

This gentleman was none other than KISS legend, Ace Frehley. After combating some technical difficulties which constituted as a broken guitar string, Frehley, ever the professional addressed the crowd in his typical Bronx demeanor. Announcing that he broke a guitar string and “they were trying to fix the f*ck*ng thing.” Once that was taking care of, Frehley took the stage to deliver two favorites: ‘New York Groove’ and ‘Cold Gin’.

The ceremony was not as long winded as I feared and actually was an evening full of entertainment. There were old favorites, up and coming artists, and an array of talent that satisfied everyone in the building. Being a long time Ace Frehley fan, when I heard he was going to be apart of the evening graciously accepted the opportunity to review the show. However, I was pleasantly surprised at the sample of bands I was subject to.

I was definitely intrigued and look forward to checking some of them out again in the near future.

By Dawn Belotti