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Slipknot's Pledge of Allegiance Tour w/ American Head Charge & System of a Down
Peoria, Illinois - October 27, 2001
By Kerry Bryer
(more articles from this author)
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Slipknot's Pledge of Allegiance tour pulled into Peoria, Illinois on October 27th. The tour was already short one band due to Peoria natives, Mudvayne, pulling out of the tour earlier in the month. Then when fans reached the convention center, all were informed that Rammstein would not be performing as well. You could feel the disappointment among the fans. They had all expected to see five awesome acts when they purchased a ticket and with the tour now down to three we all felt a little ripped off.

American Head Charge

The new guys on the scene, American Head Charge, kicked off the evening right. They brought the fans to a frenzy. This was my first experience with American Head Charge and I was thoroughly impressed by their performance. They recently released their first major album, The War of Art, and I expect it is flying off of shelves at this very moment. This band is tremendous and I look forward to seeing more of them and following their success. They recently signed on to tour with the almighty Slayer till Christmas, then they are hooking back up with Slipknot for a European tour. American Head Charge is going to be huge by the end of next year, mark my words, because I'm very sure of it. With the energy that they release during a performance, fans across the world are going to love this band.

System of a Down
When American Head Charge left the stage, we all expected to see System of a Down up next, but were secretly hoping that they filled the voids of the missing bands with another act. Then when the curtain dropped for the second performance and No One stepped forward. No One is a band from Chicago that was brought in to try and fill the spot. No One had an alright sound and put on a decent performance, but the people of the Pledge tour did them a great injustice by the placement of this band. To fill the shoes of Rammstein and Mudvayne would have been difficult for almost any band, but it was an impossible mission for No One. No One is simply not ready for that type of a tour or that large of a venue. If tour managers would have had them open the show, things would have went over fine, but to place them after American Head Charge was a devastating blow. Everyone gave them a fair chance and watched more then half their set, but we all soon decided that a cold beer out in the hallway would be more of an entertaining experience.

System of a Down

Once No One removed themselves from the stage, the fans became anxious waiting for System of a Down to emerge. Then it happened, the boys from Armenia took control of the stage and the rest of the venue with ease. The entire venue erupted into a mass mosh pit forcing those that didn't want to participate into the stands and behind barricades. Soon System fans began ripping up the 4x8 tiles on the floor, exposing the ice rink underneath. Fans began dancing on the tiles as others held them in the air above the crowd. This evening gave a new twist to crowd surfing, this time the actually used a surf board of sorts. With sometimes as many as three fans per sheet, the venue was a chaotic inferno of mayhem - security was helpless, unable to even get through the crowd. It was great! One of the most spectacular performances I've seen yet.

System of a Down
After Systems grand performance fans were ready for the evenings headliners to take the stage. Everyone expected even more mayhem, keeping with Slipknot tradition. Slipknot's newest, long awaited release, Iowa, is a great album. I was very impressed with it's ability to hold it's own with their last self titled debut release. I saw Slipknot twice during their support for the last release and both shows were great. I had never seen anything like it, so I was anxious to see what they had in store this time. I thought I would never say it, but I wasn't that impressed with their performance this time around. Don't get me wrong, their sound was great, everything was tight and Corey was at his prime. The stage theatrics and pyrotechnics that they now have are spectacular and it was cool as hell to see the drums on either side of the stage rise, fall, and swirl with their drummer in tow. But after about the third song, it became like watching someone else have a good time. The past performances I've seen of the Knot were brutal, they trow one another around and Clown worked the audience, taunting all. This time, it seemed as though they were a little to relaxed, almost bored with their own show. It was like they just went through the motions and tried to let a lot of the stage props do the work of getting the crowd going for them.


I have to say that the majority of this tour was a disappointment, but American Head Charge and System of a Down managed to deliver great performances. They gave the fans what they came for and I'm so glad they did, because with the prices of a ticket, fans would have probably destroyed the venue in an attempt to get some satisfaction out of the evening.

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