The line up has just been released and every day has a large number of bands I'd kill to see. I'm considering making the journey down to Worcester if I can score the time off work for the full weekend. Any other nationers considering going, or have gone in the past? Also, is there anyone from that general area that could give me a run down of the land if I do happen to go?
Friday night looks killer. I'd love to see Fleshgod Apocalypse, Black Dahlia Murder, and Nile on the same stage. I went to this fest for 5 or 6 years in a row back when I lived in Boston (2000-2005 timeframe). It's a fun time. Everyone from out of town stayed at the Crowne Plaza hotel across the street or the Hampton Inn about a half mile walk east, so the parties went on all night. There are a few other bars around too. You can find cheaper lodging a little further away if you don't mind driving to the venue.
There are two stages, a big theater-type stage downstairs, and a small bar-sized stage in an upstairs room, that you actually have to go through to get to the balcony seats for the main area. It will be completely packed everywhere, and they'll have a bunch of merch and vendors upstairs above the small stage.
The sound in the Palladium sucks (especially in the balcony) unless you are front and center, maybe they've done something about it since I've been last, but I think it's just the acoustics of the place. It's all general admission. The Palladium is a run-down shithole but I kinda miss the old place.
Honestly, I wouldn't want it any other way...my hearing will likely be shot after day 1 regardless. It might be the one time I bring those ear plug things to drown the sound a bit to a show.
But yeah, over the whole weekend I'd be looking to see: The Black Dahlia Murder, The Acacia Strain, First Blood, Reign Supreme, Protest the Hero, Bane, Shipwreck, Cruel Hand, Naysayer, The Greenery, Rotting Out, and Every Time I Die.
All the bands I don't have listed are obviously still worth checking out though, to be honest the Sunday line up is kind of lacking for me. If ETID weren't playing that day I'd definitely just go for Friday and Saturday.
It used to just be a Saturday and Sunday fest, which was great because they'd still get the same amount of bigger bands and Euro bands, but it just gets a bit diluted at three days with more little-known local acts. With metal and core in a place with poor sound, if you don't know the bands they just start to blend together in a wall of noise.
It's definitely a good time if you know a bunch of people there.
The pits at Boston-area hardcore shows were getting fucking brutal by the time I moved away, so if that's your thing, bring some aspirin. hahaha. No clue how it is up north where you are, at Phoenix metal shows it's usually just a couple of drunk Indians from the rez stomping around.
No shame in wearing plugs, I do it all the time now. After seeing a hundred shows, I appreciate what hearing I still have.