It’s the fourth year in row, where hard rock/heavy metal magazine, Revolver, hosts their own “Anti-Grammys”, The Golden God Awards. But this is not your typical award show. Hosted by wrestler Chris Jericho at Los Angeles’ Club Nokia, the event combines the prestige of an award ceremony with the high energy of a rock concert. For the first time, however, the ceremony was broadcasted live via facebook and xBox live.
The event opened with a performance by Nikki Sixx’s side project, Sixx: A.M., featuring producer James Michael and Guns N’ Roses guitarist DJ Ashba. The last time the group had performed together was on 2008’s Crue Fest after the success of their debut album, The Heroin Diaries Soundtrack. After the release of Sixx’s latest book, This Is Gonna Hurt, the group set out on a new project and maintained massive rock radio success without any promotional touring. The band had played their latest singles, “This Is Gonna Hurt” and “Are You With Me Now?”.
Several awards were presented in honor of late musicians, such as the Paul Gray Best Bassist award, and the Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement award. Recipients of the awards included newbies Black Veil Brides, and rock legends such as Rush and Gene Simmons of Kiss.
“This awards was voted for by the fans, which is my favorite part of all of this,” Rocker Nikki Sixx said after receiving the Best Bassist Award. He continued on to give the “Golden God” award to fellow bassist and tourmate, Gene Simmons, who continued Nikki’s sentiment of fan appreciation. “Without any of you guys, we wouldn’t be anywhere, so thank you.”
Other performances of the night included Trivium and Black Veil Brides. The “BVB Army”, as the band affectionately calls their fanbase, was out in full force. Fans were decked in the band’s “warpaint”. Some even went as far as dressing nearly identical to the band members themselves. During their set, they were joined by Twisted Sister singer Dee Snider in “I Wanna Rock”.
After being introduced by female rockers Christina Scabbia of Lacuna Coil and Lizzy Hale of Halestorm, Evanescence took the stage. Amy Lee (who had won the Best Vocalist award), captivated the crowd with her incredible stage presence and powerful voice. The group had performed songs such as “Made of Stone”, their latest single “What You Want”, and their 2006 smash, “Call Me When You’re Sober”.
That performance was followed by guitar legend (and recipient of the “Riff Lord” award) Slash, performing with Alter Bridge singer Myles Kennedy. They performed songs such as “You’re A Lie” and “Back to Cali”. The guitarist took the heavy metal route to memorialize creator of Marshall Amplifiers, Jim Marshall, by completely filling the club with eleven seconds of noise. Marshall had passed away a week prior to the awards. Following this, shock rock legend Alice Cooper came out and performed “School’s Out”. With that many legends on stage, it was certainly a “We’re not worthy!” performance.
The big winners of the night were Avenged Sevenfold, who had taken home both the “Best Live Performance” and “Most Dedicated Fans” award. The band thanked their fans, and were joined by an unexpected guest. While they accepting their “Fans” award, a member of the audience jumped onstage with the band, hugging all the members. “I wanna send this award out to that guy who jumped onstage,” singer M. Shadows said, “‘Cause that is one hardcore motherfucker!”
The night ended on an emotional note, with a flashback to the 2010 award show, in which Marilyn Manson spoke out about the injustice in the Damien Echols case. Echols and two of his friends, dubbed as the “West Memphis Three”, were sentenced to death for a crime they did not commit. As stated in the video clip, Manson believed it was because of how they were dressed and the kind of music they listened to. Before the final performance went on, Damien Echols introduced the man who played a part in saving his life. Since the beginning of the night, it was clear fans from far and wide were excited to see the controversial band. Taylor Momsen, who’s band The Pretty Reckless is joining Manson on their upcoming tour, sang the opening song “The Dope Show” with him onstage. Manson then continued into “No Reflection”, his latest single from his upcoming album, Born Villian. The group’s cover of Eurythmics’ “Sweet Dreams” was also performed, when Manson announced that he was joined by friend and actor Johnny Depp on guitar. The night was closed out with a performance of their very successful hit, “The Beautiful People”.
Dee Snider describes the hard rock/heavy metal genre as the cockroach of the music industry, “Everyone hates us, but we just never die!” After being ignored in the mainstream for so many years, Wednesday night was heavy metal’s night to shine.