KROQ Weenie Roast y Fiesta - Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, Irvine - 5/5/12

KROQ Weenie Roast y Fiesta - Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, Irvine - 5/5/12

KROQ Weenie Roast y Fiesta
Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
May 5, 2012

The Weenie Roast is always a great show for people who just want to be entertained. You sit back, watch the giant platform on the main stage rotate (no waiting time in-between sets!) and just take it all in. It's a fun, boisterous, beer-spilling kind of crowd, so when you DO get beer spilled on you, you just raise your glass and say "Cheers!"

This year -- its 20th -- the modern rock station once again held the festival at the Verizon Wireless in Irvine, and once again called it the Weenie Roast y Fiesta (it was Cinco de Mayo, after all). Surrounded by countless fans in Mexican hats boozing it up, I tried to imagine how the powers that be at KROQ planned their event: "We should pick bands who've been around since we started, to reinforce the idea that all of us -- the bands, the audience, KROQ -- grew up together in music."

And it was true; more than once I'd close my eyes and go back in time. Before smart phones, before social networking, before having information available to us 24/7, we worshipped all the acts on KROQ's bill.

KROQ Weenie Roast y Fiesta - Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, Irvine - 5/5/12
So when Offspring's Dexter Holland sang "But they didn't have Ice Cube so he bought Vanilla Ice," on "Pretty Fly for a White Guy," I felt like I was 13 and in braces again. I was reminded of my gigantic girl-crush on Shirley Manson when Garbage performed "No. 1 Crush," and a cover of Patti Smith's "Because the Night." And when Brandon Boyd ripped off his shirt during Incubus' set, I drooled, like I would've when I was in my early 20s and Incubus ruled the airwaves. Come to think of it, it's been a very long time since I've seen a shirtless rockstar, which could mean one of two things: Either all the bands I watch now are old and their singers aren't interested in being nekkid anymore, or it's not a requisite lead singer move anymore. (Speaking of Incubus -- Brandon Boyd is still incredibly hot and his voice is amazing. Also I was sure he was going to get pneumonia.)

So sure, while more contemporary bands such as Silversun Pickups and The Dirty Heads killed it (in the five times I'd inadvertently watched Silversun Pickups at various festivals since 2007, I'd never seen them perform with such charisma and technical skill), there wasn't the same kind of teary-eyed nostalgia going on during their sets.

KROQ Weenie Roast y Fiesta - Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, Irvine - 5/5/12

Of course, the Weenie Roast has to top itself, even when going down memory lane. To build up the anticipation for their "secret guest performer," girls in feathered headdresses (a hybrid of Indian/Roman/peacock variety) danced up and down the aisles while two men (also in hybridized-feather gear) beat drums onstage right before Soundgarden came out for a surprise appearance.

As they led the crowd into a singalong set of "Spoonman," we were all in. Never mind that Chris Cornell didn't sound like he was in top form that night; his high range was exquisite as usual but we couldn't discern the low end and depth of his voice during "Rusty Cage" or "Fell On Black Days." (It might have been technical problems; there was also some terrible crackling coming from the speakers during their set). 

I originally didn't have high hopes for Pennywise's set sans their longtime singer Jim Lindberg, but the new band, led by Fletcher Dragge and singer Ignite Zoli Téglás, blazed through it and thoroughly pumped up the crowd. During their set, my husband turned to me and wrote down on my notebook, "This is too loud!" As Pennywise played a tribute to the Beastie Boys' Adam Yauch, via a cover of "Fight For Your Right (To Party)," I had to think: was it really too loud, or we were just too old?

Random Notebook Dump: Coldplay is the only band that can successfully rock out to quiet songs.



All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >