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Alice in Chains, Ghost And More Kickoff Summer At MMRBQ 50th Birthday Bash

MMRBQ 2018 50th Birthday Bash

WMMR 93.3 is Philadelphia’s station for all things rock. The annual MMR BQ has housed some of rocks biggest names. The likes of The Pretty Reckless, Godsmack, Stone Temple Pilots and more have hit the stage for the event. This year however was extra special; this is the 50th birthday of the station, which first rocked the airwaves back in 1968.

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This year’s lineup included Alice in Chains, Ghost, Stone Temple Pilots, Jonathan Davis of Korn, The Record Company, Dorothy and more! As with every year the event takes place fans are treated to some great food, beer, and the station’s crazy hosts are all in attendance, plus some great giveaways happen. The MMRBQ took place once again right across the river from Philly at The BB&T Pavilion in Camden, NJ.

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As a running joke with the station MMRBQ is called the wettest concert of the year because it always rains for the event… this year was no exception.

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There were definitely some big highlights from this year’s show. The best performances in my opinion were by Alice in Chains and Ghost, who both really put on show stopping performances. Alice in Chains were loud and energetic, and I definitely felt the music running through my veins either through nostalgia or because of the crowd’s energy.

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The band played in front of a wall of light bulbs and the frontman William Duvall was absolute perfection. The band’s set included some classic tracks like “Them Bones”, “Down in a Hole”, “Man in the Box” and “Would?” to name a few.

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Duvall was great at interacting with the crowd and sought the crowd’s help in singing the lyrics, they were running on all cylinders throughout the performance.

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Ghost put on their elaborate theatrical performance as always, and I honestly feel like they stole the show for the night. Their volume physically shakes you inside out.

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The crowd’s energy spiked during the set, and Cardinal Copia and The Nameless Ghouls never slowed down during the shortened set (Ghost have been performing about two hours on their Rats! On The Road Tour).

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This set clocked in at about 50 minutes and featured the hits, like “Rats”, “Absolution”, “Ritual”, “He Is”, and “Year Zero” just to give you and idea.

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Stone Temple Pilots had a similar strategy to Alice in Chains: get the crowd to sing along the entire set. Guitarist Dean Deleo was all smiles and looked to be having a blast during the performance, while frontman Jeff Gutt was vocally flawless and energetic.

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It’s important to note this performance was special for both STP and WMMR. The band has now performed at the MMRBQ with all three of their vocalist. Once with Chester Bennington, once with Weiland, and now with Gutt.

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They show great respect for the crowd and for the event. The band plowed through fan favorites like “Sex Type Thing”, “Big Empty”, and “Interstate Love Song” during the hour long set.

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Jonathan Davis of Korn brought his dark and hauntingly beautiful solo set to the packed MMRBQ crowd at about 6pm. Just one week away from the release of his debut solo album Black Labyrinth, released May 25th, Jonathan brought his band, which includes Korn drummer Ray Luzier, and the stage, like on his solo tour, was once again flooded with red lights.

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Davis was warmly welcomed by the Camden, NJ crowd and played songs from his solo album, as well as the Queen of the Damned soundtrack. Davis’s setlist included “Happiness”, “System”, and “What It Is”.

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Other performers for the day included The Record Company, a three piece band with bluesy hard rock and some harmonica playing. They won the crowd over early on in the set with high energy and just straight Rock N’ Roll.

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Dorothy also came out and delivered a seriously kickass performance, walking onstage making her own smoke to a roar from the MMRBQ crowd. Martin was definitely a fan favorite with the crowd; many said just Dorothy’s set was worth the price of admission, which is a major compliment when there are some legends on the lineup.

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Both bands delivered straight forward, no flashy rock sets that definitely succeeded in warming the New Jersey crowd up for the rest of the day.

The staff at BB&T Pavilion were absolutely fantastic and very helpful. They were attentive with concert goers, going above and beyond when possible. A festival is only as good as its foundation, right? Also, WMMR treated everyone insanely well as well; all the host and station people were so kind and their hospitality was some of the best I ever experienced at a show.

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I would definitely go again next year and I highly recommend you make your way there as well.  They always have a solid lineup and tickets are super affordable, especially considering the number of large acts that appear every year. Looking forward to next year’s MMRBQ!


See full gallery of the festival here!

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