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Inkcarceration Festival 2018 – Day 2

Mansfield, OH (July 14, 2018) – It was time to get back at it again. Inkcarceration – day two. The Ohio State Reformatory was ready and willing to take all the guests it could handle. Although the temperatures and humidity were on the rise, it was the better option to the forecast earlier in the week of scattered thunderstorms. The only thunder we would hear today would be coming from these two stages. It was one heck of a lineup, and with Gavin Rossdale leading his troops to cap off the evening, it was sure to be a day filled with some things new and old. Included would be some familiar songs and provide a day to discover some new favorite tunes.

The Ohio State Reformatory was again packed full of visitors taking the self-guided tour, most with camera phones ready. These prison halls are absolute lens candy no matter what device you’re snapping the shots with. Being in the presence of such an awe-inspiring building, one that housed so many criminals, with cells that undoubtedly witnessed some horrific acts too heinous to even imagine, is unlike most things you will ever experience. It is this feeling – the emptiness of this giant that housed nightmares, that is such a fascinating draw to many.

The rear halls also had the 70+ tattoo artists still going at it on this second day, permanently etching their art into the skin of willing ink collectors. With most of the chairs full, the tattoo guns buzzed away. From simple to very complex art, a wide diversity of designs were being poked into the skin, one quick needle jab at a time.

The Ohio State Reformatory:


Nikol © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Day two’s ReverbNation battle of the bands winner was Nikol. The alternative female vocal fronted rock band got thing’s started off today. As the crowd gathered and patrons started flooding in the gates, Nikol (Vocals), Zach Giordano (Guitar), Andrew Matthews (Guitar), Alex Lopez (Bass), and Michael Brantley (Drums) got them warmed up on this already blazing hot day. Nikol’s extra percussion, use of the telephone mic, and stage presence had the crowd’s attention throughout their set.

With a sound in the realm of Evanescence, Raleigh, North Carolina’s Nikol have previously released White Lies (2016), and Bittersweet (2013), giving them a nice selection of great original songs. Their current single Fade Out, was a crowd favorite of their set.


All About A Bubble © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

By the way of Tulsa, Oklahoma comes the alternative rock band All About A Bubble. With no shortage of melodies and song hooks, this band stood alone as the lightest band of the weekend. That’s a great thing, and it really shows the diversity that the INKCarceration Festival planners had in mind. They fit perfectly amongst the other alternative bands that started off the day, really solidifying the day’s lineup.

Playing songs from their two releases, This Atmosphere (2017) and The Sailor, The Captain (2014), the songs had hints of Americana, as well as early 2000’s punk pop. Check out their current single Feels Like Forever.

They finished their set by tossing a few dozen autographed frisbees into the crowd, causing a mad dash for those wanting to get their hands on a personalized item from All About A Bubble.

All About A Bubble:

Akadia © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Akadia is from New Orleans, Louisiana and includes band members Keith Anselmo (Vocals), Guy “Bassbeast” Daigle (Bass), Nathan Laurent (Rhythm Guitar), Ryan Duke (Lead Guitar / Backing Vocals), and Jonny “Tunes” Laurent (Drums / Backing Vocals). These five put a fresh take on hard rock, giving fans an alternative choice in their hard rock catalog.

With their current single just hitting rock radio, these five should see a quick rise in popularity with the success of Turn Away. We had a chance to catch up with Akadia after their set so keep your eyes peeled for our chat with them, and get a little insite on these five from New Orleans.


Dead Girls Academy © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.


Looking for a new chapter in his life after his previous band Vampires Everywhere, Michael Orlando (Vocals), formed Dead Girls Academy. Their metal sound is filled with harmonies and great sing-along choruses. Michael’s frontman presence is captivating, and his vocals are perfect over the incredible musical landscape layed down by his bandates. Their early slot, and extreme heat, provided a slightly smaller crowd than would be expected for this band, but they gave the crowd their all.

Michael is joined by Matt Hoffman (Guitar), Eric Findlay (Drums), Jesse Rossi (Bass), and Ben Bryan (Guitar) rounding out their lineup. Their straightforward modern rock sound can be heard on their latest single, No Way Out. Keeping some similar musical themes as his previous band, Michael’s latest album Alchemy (2018) is a testament to his perseverance. From a near fatal car crash years ago, to starting up a new band after other projects have ended, it shows you the grit and determination it takes to get up on the largest stages and put his music right in your face.

We had a chance to sit down with Dead Girls Academy. Check out our interview with them HERE!

Dead Girls Academy:

Hope For The Hollow © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Buckeye state natives Hope For The Hollow saddled up on the second stage. Dustin Allen (Vocals), Jack McGinty (Guitar), Erik Hager (Lead Guitar), Ty Plas (Bass), and Shawn Lauderback (Drums) make up this Cleveland/Akron area group.

Out in support of their latest release, Back to Life (2017), their layered vocals and dual guitar attack create a great harmonic sound. They fall into the alternative rock category, and with their big sound and catchy riffs, they are easily radio friendly.

Check out their single Savior to sample what they are all about.

Hope For The Hollow:

Through Fire © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

As the afternoon was in full swing, the temperatures hit the mid 90s. With minimal cloud cover and plenty of humidity, the sweat kept rolling, and it was time to head back to the first stage and catch Through Fire.

Justin McCain (Guitar), Grant Kendrick (Vocals), Grant Brooks (Drums), and Kyle LeBlanc (Bass) were ready to show the crowd what Omaha, Nebraska had to offer. Through Fire was ready to melt faces and were the first heavy band of the day. Grant’s vocals were great and really cut through the heaviness of the soundtrack.

With their latest lineup intact, they shared the music from their debut album Breathe (2016) and had great response from the crowd with singles like Jar of Hearts and their latest release Where You Lie.

Through Fire:

The World I Knew © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Alex Guerrero (Guitar), Max Guerrero (Drums), Wesley Merritt (Vocals), Wesley Davis (Guitar), and Noah Hines (Bass) make up the Cincinnatti, Ohio band The World I Knew (also referred to as TWIK). TWIK was the winner of the Columbus area Battle of the Bands sponsored by 99.7 The Blitz.

TWIK created their sound by fusing together metalcore with modern rap and hip-hop. Their high-energy show has been obliterating local stages on a consistant basis. They had zero shortage of energy today, and gathered a very large crowd in front of the second stage.

As they tore through songs from their latest release, The Lit and The Lost (2018), they also played their previously released singles, and had the crowd in a frenzy.

The World I Knew:

Alien Ant Farm © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Most people might think of Alien Ant Farm as the band that had the cover hit of Smooth Criminal. Obviously that is the first song that comes to mind when you think of them due the overwhelming popularity of that song, but when they hit the scene in 2001, they managed to score 4 top 10 hits. That put them directly in the spotlight early on in their career.

They carry a nice swagger to their sound prompting a little more dancing than head banging. As their set continued, they worked in newer material from Always and Forever (2015), as well as other earlier hits Movies and Glow.

Dryden Mitchell (Vocals), Mike Cosgrove (Drums), Terry Corso (Guitar), and Timmy Pee (Bass) kept the audience in their grasp, until they finished up their set with Smooth Criminal. Their solid performance reminded you that they had definately staked their claim during the early 2000’s rock scene. Their newer material is even stronger than their earlier hits, so do yourself a favor and check out Always and Forever.

Alien Ant Farm:

’68 © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

As sweat rolled down the forehead and over the brow, it carried the last remnants of sunblock from an earlier application of the UV protectant into both eyes, causing a slight burn and hampering vision slightly. With the heat continuing to soar, ’68 made their way onto the stage. They were decked out in signature black suits that surely would not last long today. Being from Atlanta, Georgia, they may be used to the heat, but even by peanut state standards, it was a bit much.

As Josh Scogin (Vocals and Guitar) and Michael McClellan (Drums) got their set started they played with a spirit seldom seen on stage. Playing their instruments so hard, it appeared at times it would be too much for them to take. The unconventional two piece make-up of their band did not detract from the sound they were able to create. They filled the air with as much sound as a band twice their size.

Out in support of their debut album, Two Parts Viper (2018), playing the singles This Life Is Old, New, Borrowed and Blue and Whether Terrified or Unafraid. With a dry sense of uncomfortable humor in between songs, they worked themselves into a sweaty mess until Josh finished the set by dismantling Michael’s drum kit, as he continued to play until the last piece was removed. As they left the stage, the crowd broke out into a huge roar of a chant… “six-ty-eight, six-ty-eight, six-ty-eight…” giving this band the honor of being the only band of the weekend to this point to garner such admiration, post-set.


Fuel © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Although Fuel had a sizable hit with Shimmer (1998), it was the turn of the century that gave them their biggest hit with Hemorrhage (In My Hands) (2000). With their post-grunge sound, they helped cement the world of rock as grunge faded into the background.

A product of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, these four put on a great show. With the current lineup of Brett Scallions (Vocals), Jason Womack (Guitar), Phil Buckman (Bass), and Shannon Boone (Drums) they shared the past songs as well as some from their latest 2014 release Puppet Strings which features the single Soul To Preach To.

Just as most of the bands today, Fuel would strike up a past hit you might not have thought about. It was an interesting thing that happened all day with all of the bands that have been around for a while. Rock isn’t dead, and at this point at this festival, it was clearly alive.



Living Colour © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Behind the latest release Shade (2017), Living Colour were here to share their music, new and old. It was a great recurring theme for most bands of the day. Bands that have been around for 10, 20, or 30 years, showcasing their latest sounds. With the lack of rock on mainstream radio, it can be difficult to keep up with all of the latest releases. Today however, these bands were here to prove they still belong.

Corey Glover (Vocals), Will Calhoun (Drums), Vernon Reid (Guitar), and Doug Wimbish (Bass) did not disappoint as they played the newer song Program as well as their mega-hit Cult of Personality (1988), along with Love Rears Its Ugly Head (1990).

Vernon ripped through the guitar, and Corey’s vocals were on point, transporting you back in time with Cult of Personality. As the shadows were getting longer, the heat was subsiding just a bit, Living Colour finished their set as the second stage headliner, and the massive crowd that had gathered was plenty pleased.

Living Colour:

Our Lady Peace © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

Our Lady Peace was now on the main stage. Starting their set with the sun visible behind the stage, playing until the sun was just over the horizon. Making sure they got in the hits mostly early in their set, they played Superman’s Dead (1996), Somewhere Out There (2001), and Clumsy (1997) to the delight of the crowd. It was a more relaxed crowd than the night before, without a frenzy of crowd surfing, and plenty of patrons lounged comfortably on blankets spread out on the hill facing the stage.

Raine Maida (Vocals), Duncan Coutts (Bass), Steve Mazur (Guitar), and Jason Pierce (Drums) make up Our Lady Peace. The melodic music of their softer songs filled the air with a beauty and grace as the sun was setting. Couple that with their hard rock songs, it was a great mix of music that fit perfectly at this time of night.

Adding in some cuts from their latest release Somethingness (2018), this album features the hits Head Down and Ballad Of A Poet.

Our Lady Peace:

Bush © Splice Magazine – Allen Heimberger. Please do not alter images.

The sun had successfully set over the horizon allowing the sweatiness to begin subsiding. The stage was blackened with just a hint of dim light. The crowd let out a large roar as Bush walked out on stage. Gavin Rossdale approached center stage and it only took one guitar chord to get the crowd worked up even more. As the opening riff of Machinehead filled the air, the lights went up, and it was time for this powerhouse band to share their catalog of hits with a very sizeable crowd. By this song choice as the opening song, they showed they meant business.

Gavin Rossdale (Vocals, Guitar), Robin Goodridge (Drums), Chris Traynor (Guitar), and Corey Britz (Bass) sound amazing, and have not lost a step since Bush hit the scene in the early nineties. When they were playing their early hits, it transported you back to the days of Sixteen Stone (1992), as they played newer songs from Black and White Rainbows (2017), the crowd was on every note.

The intimate performance of Glycerine was a nice change of pace and feel. Seeing Gavin, center stage bathed in faint lights, only directed onto him, as he strummed the guitar and bellowed out his vocals. The scene of him solo on such a massive stage performing such a beautiful song was amazing.

They continued to fill the evening with music and Gavin even got into the crowd at one point, giving some fans the experience of a lifetime. It was an unbelievable show from a group that is still cranking out hits with no signs of stopping anytime soon.



Day two was in the books. A day that demanded gallons of fluids to stay hydrated. It was again all about the music and tattoos. The music of the day was an overwhelming trip back ten or thirty years, allowing the ability to look back on some of our favorite songs, and at the same time discover new favorites. The perfect way to discover or re-discover music is a festival. The offering today was eclectic, powerful, and super talented.

10 plus hours in the sun, dealing with humidity, and at the same time having enough energy to party with the 13 bands on the schedule today was tiring and refreshing all at the same time. As the body might have been wearing down, music was the fuel that kept the cyliders firing.

It was now time to turn our focus to Sunday’s lineup. A true metalheads dream was about to descend on Mansfield in just a matter of hours. Get the horns ready!

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