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Breaking Benjamin, Five Finger Death Punch rock packed Pavilion

August 5, 2018

Jon Parker and his 7-year-old son, Jeremy, swayed back and forth, singing every note along with Breaking Benjamin vocalist Benjamin Burnley at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion on Friday night.

The father-son combo wasn’t alone in doing so, but even after a long day of rock, the connection and peaceful serenity surrounded by guitar riffs and pounding drums was ever apparent.

“This is something that we both enjoy,” Jon said. “He sings along to this music in my truck. We haven’t missed a rock show (at The Pavilion) this year.”

Jon and Jeremy weren’t alone as the combination of Breaking Benjamin, Five Finger Death Punch, Nothing More and Bad Wolves packed the amphitheater with fans for an evening of unfiltered yet refined hard rock.

Bad Wolves, fronted by vocalist Tommy Vext, opened the show with a fast, in-your-face style that set the mood for the rest of the night. Made up of mostly well-established musicians, including ex-In this Moment bassist Kyle Konkiel and ex-Devil Driver drummer John Boeklin, Bad Wolves has a sound that plays well live and has potential to become something huge in upcoming years.

Bad Wolves set also included a duet with Vext and female musician Diamante. The group closed out their seven-song set with “Zombie,” a Cranberry’s cover song that reached No. 1 in the Billboard US mainstream rock chart.

San Antonio based band Nothing More followed Bad Wolves with their exceptional, energetic set. The band was making its third appearance this year in the Houston area and its fan base continues to grow with each visit. Lead singer Johnny Hawkins bounced from one side of the stage to the other belting out the powerful songs that allowed them to garner three Grammy nominations.

Hawkins closed out the set while playing on the band’s Scorpion Tail sound manipulator. The 14-foot-tall instrument looks like a carnival ride but delivers a sound and visual that is unlike any other in rock today.

Five Finger Death Punch came out on stage as the sun was starting to sink behind the hill of the amphitheater, offering many fans a reprieve and also a chance to expend more energy. The Pavilion came to life as vocalist Ivan Moody belted out “Wash it all away,” “Wrong Side of Heaven,” “The Bleeding,” and many others off the 13-song set list.

Moody was on point with his performance and seemed genuinely appreciative of the crowd’s size and participation.

Breaking Benjamin closed out the night with a moving performance that had the whole amphitheater rocking. The Pennsylvania based band belted singable hit after hit with a focus and execution unmatched on the night.

Breaking Benjamin started the night with “Red Cold River” off its latest album ‘Ember.’ The group moved from there to hits “I Will Not Bow,” “Never Again” and “Breath.” The group played a medley of hard rock classics “Schism,” “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” “Walk,” and “Sad But True.” With 16 songs in total, Breaking Benjamin had the longest set list of the night and played other hits such as “Sooner or Later,” “Angels Fall,” “Failure,” and more before finishing out with “The Diary of Jane.”

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