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This week in Tampa: 98 Rockfest, R. Kelly, Rise Against and more




It's a good week to be a fan of hard rock and heavy metal in Tampa (but then again, isn't it always?). This week brings 98 Rockfest, featuring Shinedown (above), Evanescence, P.O.D. and Five Finger Death Punch; as well as Rise Against, A Day To Remember, Lacuna Coil, Behemoth, Sleeping Giant, In Fear and Faith and -- hell, we'll throw in Lit, just for old time's sake.

If metal's not your thing, you've also got R. Kelly, Greg Lake, Sister Hazel, Mickey Avalon and a handful of festivals up and down the gulf coast. Here to walk you through it all is Carole Liparoto...

R. Kelly
SATURDAY 10 p.m. Amphitheatre, 1609 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $25 and up. (813) 873-8368.
There’s nothing subtle about an R. Kelly song. Think back to ’90s hit You Remind Me of Something, in which Kelly coos, “You remind me of my Jeep, I want to ride it.” Yep, he absolutely compared his woman to an off-road vehicle. How about Kelly’s latest blatant croon tune, the Trapped In the Closet-like hip-hopera Share My Love. Over a disco-soul beat, Kelly proclaims, “Let’s do what we were born to do — populate!” The controversial king of modern R&B, one who has built his career on window-fogging slow jams, salacious yet silky pop songs and an inspirational smash (I Believe I Can Fly), is being billed as “appearing live,” at the Ybor Amp. In other words, there are no guarantees here, but we’d bet dollars to doughnuts that Kelly can’t resist taking the microphone, giving fans an excellent opportunity to catch an R&B king up close and on the cheap.

98 Rockfest
Featuring Shinedown, Evanescence, Five Finger Death Punch, Halestorm, Trivium (main stage); and P.O.D., Adelita’s Way, Art of Dying, Otherwise (free outdoor plaza stage)
SATURDAY 2:30 p.m. Tampa Bay Times Forum, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $30-$75. (813) 301-2500.
98 Rockfest, the annual event that’s always good for some gale-force shredding, returns to the Forum Saturday. One of Florida’s most successful modern rocks acts, Shinedown, headlines this year’s festivities with new, chart-climbing disc, Amaryllis, to work from. Its buzzed-about single Bully “doesn’t condone violence but rather survival,” frontman Brent Smith told Rolling Stone. And if you didn’t catch super-piped queen of the damned Amy Lee and Evanescence back in January, here’s your second chance. The Little Rock, Ark.-bred band brings corseted goth metal with murky guitars and a splash of symphony, displayed best on tracks like lover’s lament My Immortal. 

FRIDAY 7 p.m. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $16. (727) 895-3045. 
Cali alt-rock act Lit is unapologetic when it says latest single Same Sh**, Different Drink is like part two of ’90s hit My Own Worst Enemy. “Let’s not overthink this and just go in there and write a song today that talks about the things we’re experts in,” vocalist A. Jay Popoff told Noisecreep. And that “expertise” is most definitely power-chord driven, boozy, self-deprecating rock. The album The View from the Bottom debuts this summer, and here’s hoping it makes us completely and wonderfully miserable again.

Rise Against
With A Day to Remember, Title Fight
MONDAY 7 p.m. Hawaiian Village at Stadium Green Iguana, 2520 N Dale Mabry, Tampa. $40 and up. (813) 868-7600.
There aren’t many acts that go as loud and hard as Rise Against while, all at once, educating about sweatshop labor and the ethical treatment of animals. These Vans-wearing vegetarians fill their sets with fast-paced, activist attacks of punk and hard rock. And that’s all in spite of the fact that breezy ballad Swing Life Away was the tune that launched the band’s mainstream success in 2005. The pride of Ocala, A Day to Remember, opens with an unorthodox but hard-charging combo of pop-punk and metalcore.

Stringbreak Music Festival
Featuring Rani Arbo and Daisy Mayhem, Solas, Blue Highway, Chris Smither, Malcolm Holcolmbe, Have Gun Will Travel, many more
FRIDAY 12:15 p.m., SATURDAY 10:30 a.m. and SUNDAY 11 a.m. Sertoma Youth Ranch, 85 Myers Rd., Brooksville. $25 and up. For set dates and times, visit
College kids can keep Daytona and Panama City. Free-spirited folk and jam fans have Brooksville(!) and its yearly strum fest, Stringbreak. Americana, folk and bluegrass tunes are ripe for the pickin’ at this kid-and-pet friendly music and camping event. A robust crop of local and national artists perform Friday through Sunday.

Greg Lake
SATURDAY 7:30 p.m. Sold out. And MONDAY 7:30 p.m. $39 and up. Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater. (727) 791-7400.
Fans of King Crimson and Emerson, Lake and Palmer have come out in full force to support singer-songwriter Greg Lake — so much so, that a second show date has been added. Greg Lake’s “Songs of a Lifetime Tour” plays out like a musical autobiography with Lake playing best-known songs from Emerson, Lake and Palmer (Lucky Man, From the Beginning) and King Crimson (In The Court of King Crimson), and talking candidly about his life and career.

With Watain, The Devil’s Blood, In Solitude 
TUESDAY 7:30 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $22-$27.
A set by this Polish death metal act resembles an hour inside a steel mill.  So if the dulcet tones of industry are your thing, check out Behemoth, a band that played an integral role in establishing the extreme metal scene in Poland in the ’90s. Frontman Adam “Nergal” Darski was diagnosed with leukemia in 2010, but he presses thunderously on during Behemoth’s 2012 tour.

Also playing

Cotee River Seafood and Blues Festival Fri.-Sun. With Sean Chambers, Josh Lamkin, Bluezification, more. Sims Park, Bank Street and Grand Boulevard, New Port Richey. Free.

DJ Headbussa’s Splash Down 3 Pool Party Sat. 2 p.m. Campus Lodge, 15115 Livingston Ave., Lutz. Free. (813) 866-9700.

Variety Workshop Sat. With Chubby Tuff, Project Save CA Hircus. 9 p.m. Neptune Lounge, 13 S Safford Ave., Tarpon Springs. $5. (727) 943-5713.

Bikini Blues Bash Sat. featuring Lucky Peterson, Sarasota Slim, Little Jake Mitchell and the Soul Searchers, Betty Fox and the Dirty Bastards, Charlie Morris, Paul Anthony Band, more. Noon. Treasure Island Beach, 104th and Gulf Boulevard. Free admission; parking directly on the beach is $10. (727) 547-4575 ext. 237 or

Sleeping Giant Sat. With First Blood, In the Midst of Lions, more. 7 p.m. Local 662, 662 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $22. 

Lacuna Coil Sat. 7 p.m. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $20-$22. (727) 895-3045. 

Cappella Music Festival Sat. featuring Sister Hazel, Miggs, JR Doctor, Hip Abduction, Woody and the Nutcrackers, Daniel B. Marshall, Ken Apperson. 2 p.m. Williams Park, 330 Second Ave. N., St. Petersburg. Free general admission.

Gen-XX V. Jackal Sat. 10:30 p.m. The Castle, 2004 N 16th St., Ybor City. $10-$15. (813) 247-7547.

New Groove City and Gumbi Ortiz Sun. With Theo Valentin, Fred Johnson, Shawn Brown Band with Betty Fox, Kandy Reign, and TC (formerly of On Que Players), Marlon Boone. 5 p.m. Skipper’s Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $10. (813) 971-0666.

In Fear And Faith Wed. With For All Those Sleeping, Dream On Dreamer, Casino Madrid, Adestria, Rising Down. 6 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $10-$13.

Mickey Avalon Thurs. With Andre Legacy. 8 p.m. Orpheum, 1915 E. Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $16-$19. 

Robbie Rivera Thurs. With Peace Treaty, Pedro M., more. 9 p.m. The Ritz, 1503 Seventh Ave., Ybor City. $16-$21. (813) 247-2555.

-- Carole Liparoto, tbt*

[Last modified: Tuesday, April 24, 2012 11:17am]


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