Hardcore as a musical genre in Colombia that has remained mostly in the underground side of Rock. For most of its fans, the taste for it grew on them from the hard times in their lives and part of that growing-up process. For young and old fans, Suicidal Tendencies is the peak and foundation of their musical taste and the chance to see them live with the addition of Dave Lombardo at the drums was one in a lifetime opportunity. That chance came on a Monday evening for all the attendants at Escenario Plaza and they took it hard.
The day was long for most of us, as we were from almost opening time checking different bands. Even the act that came right before Suicidal Tendencies made us jump, mosh and dance with all we had that day. But, I could not miss the opportunity to mosh with this beast of a band, I am sure that was the case to many of the people that were there with me. The show started with a complete anthem from the band: ‘You Can’t Bring Me Down’. For many of us, this song represents the soundtrack to which we rise from our own ashes, a fact that was obvious for the different mosh pits that rose at scenario Plaza. What an energetic song.
The show developed, as it should, with Mike Muir blasting style of singing and moving around the stage. I must say to those that are in their way as live performers that you have to become hyperactive people on stage. That kind of style is infectious to both your band mates and the public. These guys are in great shape despite the years, which was evident from beginning to end. Suicidal Tendencies are not strangers to the festival, so they took the stage as they were in a familiar place. The following songs were ‘Two Sided Politics’, ‘Go’n Breakdown’ which went without a break, keeping people attention and attitude high.
When a break finally appeared, it was time for Mike to greet an audience that was absolutely excited as they were. In the greeting, he expressed how thrilled they were to be at Rock al Parque once again, after 11 years. Also, Mike Muir took the chance to introduced Dave Lombardo and the next song, which started with a bombastic drum introduction to ‘Trip at the Brain’.
After people letting themselves go with that display of power, Mike Muir remembered how music causes a lot of power and remembered something his father said regarding how people have not really lived until the find something that moves them as a whole, and once you find it you lose your fear; and introduced ‘Freebumb’. The initial riff was a blast to the ears, and the speed it took later transport to many in the audience to mosh their bodies to oblivion.
The show went on and I honestly do not know where the energy came to keep on going. It had been at that time three days of jumping, of listening, of moving and my body felt like giving up, but Suicidal Tendencies would not allow that to happen. After a constant blast, it was time to hear ‘War Inside My Head’, another song that plays right to subconsciouses. The bass line in this song has Robert Trujillo’s signature that gives it a groove that speaks to me.
Speaking of bass intros, that is exactly what we got for the next song ‘Subliminal’. By the end of it, on a high ride, some thank you words from Mike Muir and he got hard and introduced ‘Church of Suicidal’, a different groove but a decisive one that ended with the entire Plaza shouting ‘ST’. With little break the showed continue with ‘Possessed Skate’ with the mention that Suicidal Tendencies was inducted to The Skateboard Hall Of Fame and all hell broke loose. What an energetic song, it really took me to those videos I have seen of skateboard experiences through any city.
Riffs came and went, songs kept on coming, and Suicidal Tendencies was bringing down the house. ‘Cyco Vision’, ‘I Saw Your Mommy’, ‘How Will I Laugh Tomorrow’ kept the mood grooving and energetic. In between ‘I Saw Your Mommy’ and ‘Cyco Vision’ bassist Ra Diaz gave a proper introduction to all psychos at the audience to create a massive wall of death in which many went crazy. Mosh pits and walls of death tend to go a bit over the top in Bogota, and this time, it was not the exception. The most interesting fact for those that do not mosh is that after kicking and beating, most of the participants end up hugging and saying how great it was.
Then Suicidal Tendencies slowed down their performance to give a break, creating a proper atmosphere for an insightful song with ‘How I will Laugh Tomorrow’. After such song, the only option to follow was to listen ‘Pledge Your Alliance’, another anthem of this brutal band, another song to which people left their bodies and souls in the mosh.
The show was close to an end, there was a long break that made us believe that the show was over, leaving us to believe that we would not listen one of the most iconic songs out of this experience. Boy, we were wrong. Suicidal Tendencies came back to the stage with a vengeance in the shape of ‘Institutionalized’. For me, I just wanted to give Mike a Pepsi, but making all jokes aside, this song was the first song I have ever listened from Suicidal Tendencies and the one that got me into the band. I sang my lungs out to almost every letter of the lyrics. “Mentally I’ll be dead” kept ringing into my brain long before and long after the show was over. This was a great way to end the show and to end a Rock al Parque.
This was the end I was waiting for, for both the Suicidal Tendencies presentation and the twenty-second edition of Rock al Parque. This time, the festival brought it all to me. Acts that I have been long to see live once again, pleasant surprises along the way, and great company as usual. Three days went by that reminded me that Rock as a genre has a wide spectrum and I felt my love for it renewed.