Louder Than Life 2022 Preview

Louisville’s Louder Than Life has been serious expanding in only its first decade, going from having to cancel in 2020 (like everything else) to returning with four days last...
Louder Than Life
Louder Than Life

Louisville’s Louder Than Life has been serious expanding in only its first decade, going from having to cancel in 2020 (like everything else) to returning with four days last year, and now comes back in full, Thursday-Sunday, September 22nd-25th:


Space Zebra Stage


Nine Inch Nails, 9:00 PM

The most successful and well-known industrial band ever, Trent Reznor’s Nine Inch Nails (QRO photos) are legends in quality as well. The group was loud & angry in debut Pretty Hate Machine and “Head Like a Hole” before grunge was a ‘thing’, and has kept up that spirit ever since. Yes, they inspired countless imitators, but NIN themselves never fell into a Downward Spiral. The iconic nineties act (QRO spotlight on) managed to stay relevant in the new century/millennium with such creations as the inspired underground viral alternate reality game/marketing campaign Year Zero, but went into hiatus in 2009 while Reznor worked on other projects, such as the Oscar-winning score for The Social Network (and American version of Girl With a Dragon Tattoo), work on Dave Grohl’s Sound City documentary (QRO soundtrack review) and …Like Clockwork (QRO review) by Queens of the Stone Age, plus new group How To Destroy Angels (QRO album review).

But the unholy Nine Inch Nails has risen again, from 2013’s excellent Hesitation Marks (QRO review) to 2020’s Ghosts V: Together & Ghosts IV: Locusts. Be sure to catch NIN (QRO photos) headlining Louder Than Life (QRO photos headlining a ’22 festival), as it’s an experience you will never forget, guaranteed.

Nine Inch Nails

Evanescence, 6:40 PM

Shifting from the nu metal of their pre-millennium predecessors, Evanescence (QRO photos) forged an actually new alternative, gothic metal with early aughts records such as Anywhere But Home and The Open Door. While the line-up around singer/pianist Amy Lee has shifted over the years, with hiatuses & more, they come to Louder Than Life behind last year’s The Bitter Truth.


Highly Suspect, 5:00 PM

Cape Cod rock outfit Highly Suspect (QRO photos) come to Louder Than life (QRO photos at a festival) behind 2019’s MCID (QRO photos at a ’22 festival).

Highly Suspect

Nothing More, 3:30 PM

San Antonio metalcore outfit Nothing More (QRO photos) play their fourth Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) off of this year’s sixth full-length, Spirits.

Nothing More


Dorothy, 2:10 PM

Maggie Lindemann, 1:00 PM


Disruptor Stage


Tenacious D, 8:00 PM

It’s Tenacious D time (QRO photos) – muthafuckin’ D! Jack Black and Kyle Gass – JB & KG (QRO photos) – began their epic journey when they got a handful of shorts got on HBO (making up only three half-hour episodes), and then Black’s movie career took off and ‘The D’ took off. Making & playing heavy metal music with only their voices (including “Inward Singing”) and acoustic guitars (including “One Note Song”), they became the greatest – and funniest – band in rock ‘n’ roll thanks to songs like “Tribute” and “Wonderboy”.

It all culminated in their life story coming to the silver screen in Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny in 2006 – and the passion project bombed in the theaters. The D were not ashamed, even their second tour DVD, The Complete Masterworks Part 2, where they talked about the film’s lack of success (“This is film Tenacious D doesn’t want you to see” – Black), but it seemed like the group had had their run (and their drummer Dave Grohl something returned to his side-project, The Foo Fighters).

But no one can keep The D down, and Kage & Jabels returned in 2012 with Rise of the Fenix (QRO review)! So they hit “The Road” (QRO live review outdoors), did their “Cock Push-Ups”, got their “Low Hanging Fruit” and “Roadie” – get ready for them to “Rock Your Socks” off with “Exploding Brains” (QRO live review)! Most recently, in 2018 they put out their awesome series of shorts & album Post-Apocalypto (QRO review), with a live show that sees them rock the wasteland (QRO live review).

Hollywood Jack and Rage Cage (QRO photos) may have declared that “Rock Is Dead” – and even embraced “The Jazz” (QRO photos of The D playing a jazz club) before winning the Grammy for Best Metal Performance for their tribute to Ronny James Dio – but there isn’t a better act (QRO live review) to combines rock & comedy as Tenacious D (QRO photos at a festival), who bring the full D (QRO ’22 photos) to Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival).

Tenacious D

Ho99o9, 6:20 PM

Newark’s Ho99o9 (QRO photos) mix punk and rap for a singular brand of alternative hip-hop, and return to Louder Than Life behind this year’s SKIN.



Giovannie & The Hired Guns, 5:10 PM

Lilith Czar, 4:00 PM

Mothica, 2:50 PM

Eva Under Fire, 1:40 PM


Loudmouth Stage


Bring Me the Horizon, 7:45 PM

Sheffield lies at the heart of northern England’s manufacturing belt (or what’s left of it) – and brings the world the metal core of Bring Me the Horizon (QRO photos at an English festival), who play their third Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) behind 2019’s Amo.

Bring Me the Horizon

Halestorm, 5:45 PM

Because of course the hard-working road warriors Halestorm (QRO live review) are back at it again at for a third Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival). Only COVID could keep them from touring last year, but they still put together the #RoadieStrong benefit, and now are back on that road (QRO photos in 2021).



Though he first got notice for dating pop star Halsey and releasing single “11 Minutes” with her and Blink-182’s Travis Barker, Doncaster’s Dominic Harrison (QRO photos at a ’21 festival) has since made his own name as Yungblud (QRO photos at a ’22 festival) like with 2020’s Weird!.



Spiritbox, 2:50 PM

New Years Day, 1:35 PM

Plush, 12:30 PM


Revolver Stage


Ministry, 7:05 PM

Is there a better act to rock Louder Than Life than Ministry (QRO photos)? Al Jourgensen’s group (QRO ’22 photos) pioneered the industrial metal sound in the nineties. There was a break-up that was definitely going to be permanent, and a reunion a few years later, and last year their fourth post-reunion record, Moral Hygiene.


Apocalyptica, 5:40 PM

One can be assured there is absolutely no band like Apocalyptica (QRO ’22 photos). Hailing from Finland, they’re composed of a drummer & three classically trained cellists, and started off as a Metallica tribute band, before composing their own unique records, most recently with 2000’s Cell-O.



Royal & The Serpent, 4:35 PM

Taipei Houston, 3:25 PM

Superbloom, 2:15 PM

The Dead Deads, 1:05 PM


DW Presents Stage


Archers, 4:30 PM

Nail Bite, 3:00 PM

Asava, 2:15 PM

Two Sides of Me, 1:30 PM

Magg Dylan, 12:20 PM



Space Zebra Stage


Slipknot, 9:40 PM

Slipknot were wearing masks before it was cool (QRO photos). Their horror-metal has been scaring people for over two decades now, most recently on 2019’s We Are Not Your Kind. They have a look as signature as anyone (QRO photos), and come back to Louisville for their third Louder Than Life (QRO photos).


Lamb of God, 7:30 PM

Virginia’s Lamb of God (QRO photos) have opened for the likes of Metallica and even Slayer on their final ever tour (QRO photos from that tour), to come to Louder Than Life behind this year’s Omens.

Lamb of God


In This Moment, 5:45 PM

In Flames, 4:15 PM

DED, 2:55 PM

Vended, 1:45 PM

In This Moment

Disruptor Stage


Meshuggah, 8:40 PM

One of the most important bands in modern metal, Sweden’s Meshuggah (QRO photos in Europe) brought innovation and complex, polymetered song structures to the epic genre, pushing it to its extreme. They now come to Louder Than Life behind this year’s Immutable.


Baroness, 7:10 PM

2012 was the best year and the worst year for Savannah’s Baroness (QRO live review). The metal group put themselves at the forefront of today’s metal renaissance with the highly acclaimed Yellow & Green (QRO review) – only for tragedy to strike in the form of a terrible bus accident in England. No lives were lost, but drummer Allen Blickle and bassist Matt Maggioni had to quit the band due to their injuries. Thankfully, replacements have been found and Baroness returned the road (QRO photos). They come to Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) with word of a sixth full-length in the works.



Crown the Empire, 5:55 PM

Mike’s Dead, 4:40 PM

Archetypes Collide, 3:30 PM

AEIR, 2:20 PM

Crown the Empire

Loudmouth Stage


Shinedown, 8:25 PM

Jacksonville’s Shinedown is perhaps the most successful rock band of the twenty-first century, with the most number one singles on the Billboard Mainstream Rock charts out of any act. Maybe they’re not the pick of the rock critic literati, but instead the music of the people with their Southern, post-grunge hard rock, such as this year’s Planet Zero, and return to Louder Than Life.


Mastodon, 6:35 PM

The New Wave of American heavy metal gave birth to Atlanta’s Mastodon (QRO live review in Atlanta), who achieved a commercial breakthrough in 2011’s The Hunter (QRO review), and come back to Louder Than Life for a third time (QRO photos at an Atlanta festival) behind 2017’s Grammy-nominated Emperor of the Sun (QRO review) and last year’s Hushed and Grim (QRO ’22 photos in Atlanta).


Clutch, 5:00 PM

This hard rock act always performs well in the Clutch, and returns to Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival).


Amigo the Devil, 3:30 PM

Austin’s Danny Kiranos, a.k.a. Amigo the Devil, comes to Louder Than Life behind last year’s Born Against.

Amigo the Devil


All Good Things, 2:20 PM

Ego Kill Talent, 1:15 PM

All Good Things
Revolver Stage  

GWAR, 7:50 PM

There is no band as unique as GWAR (QRO spotlight on). Somewhere between Motörhead, Tenacious D, George Romero, KISS, and Gallagher, GWAR combines thrash metal with sci-fi/horror spectacle, including massive costumes & massive amounts of stage gore (QRO photos), plus taking on about every taboo there is for one of the most amazing spectacles out there (QRO live review), including at festivals (QRO photos at a festival).

The group (QRO live review) survived longtime member Flattus Maximus (Cory Smoot) departing to the intergalactic heavens in 2011, recruiting a new scumdog of the universe from the Maximus clan, putting out Battle Maximus in 2013 – only to lose singer/frontman extraordinaire Oderus Urungus (a.k.a. Dave Brockie – QRO interview) the following year. The band could have folded their tent, but instead have kept defiling the universe (QRO ’22 photos) – and know return to Louder Than Life (QRO interview at a festival).


Helmet, 6:35 PM

“To die unsung / Would really bring you down” – with those lyrics from Page Hamilton’s Helmet (QRO photos) launched into surprise, immense success in the early nineties with “Unsung” and Meantime, ushering in a major label rush for their style of straight-faced alt-metal. And while they followed that up with successful records Betty (QRO live review) and Aftertaste, the band never achieved the same level of success, breaking up as the nineties came to a close.

But of course, Hamilton wanted to put on his Helmet again, with a new line-up and a series of new records, ready to rock Louder Than Life with songs old & new.



Suicide Silence, 5:15 PM


Orbit Culture, 2:55 PM

The Luka State, 1:45 PM

Orbit Culture

DW Presents Stage


Until I Wake, 6:30 PM

Befell, 5:30 PM

Young Other, 4:30 PM

The Dev, 3:30 PM

The 500 Block, 2:30 PM

Thirst, 1:30 PM

Until I Wake


Space Zebra Stage


KISS, 9:40 PM

The seventies arena-rock spectacular was perfected by KISS (QRO live review overseas), known world-round for their trademark face paint (even when not wearing it…) and epic stage show (QRO ’21 photos). They also gave the world such classic rock classics as “Detroit Rock City”, “Rock and Roll All Nite”, and a bunch more. Their 1996 reunion brought the spectacle back, even if half of the original line-up left in 2000, iconic singer/bassist Gene Simmons still sports the longest tongue in rock ‘n’ roll (QRO photos).


Alice Cooper, 7:30 PM

While there are many inspired by, and many imitators, no one does it like Alice Cooper (QRO photos). “The Godfather of Shock Rock” emerged from the seventies stew of hard rock, heavy metal, glam, new wave, and even industrial to forge a signature sound – and look (QRO photos). You’re not gonna find greater stagecraft, and classic songs, than Alice Cooper (QRO photos) – “We’re not worthy! We’re not worthy!”

Alice Cooper

Ghostemane, 5:50 PM

Eric Whitney, a.k.a. Ghostemane, combines heavy metal, rap, and industrial music, most recently with 2020’s ANTI-ICON.


Sevendust, 4:20 PM

The Atlanta alt-metal of Sevendust (QRO spotlight on) fronted by Lajon Witherspoon (QRO interview) went from only selling 310 copies of their self-titled debut to gold-certified records and big stages (QRO photos in Atlanta), and play their fourth Louder Than Life (QRO photos in Atlanta).




Redlight King, 1:55 PM

Redlight King

Disruptor Stage


Body Count, 8:35 PM

Ice-T (QRO photos at a festival) brings his Body Count to Riot Fest. The Los Angeles crossover thrash metal outfit made mega-headlines in the early nineties with “Cop Killer” – so much so that Ice-T thought it was eclipsing the rest of Body Count’s debut record, so decided to remove it from the album and release as free single (and that’s back when singles were physical records, not a link to download some ephemeral megabytes…).

Of course, these days Ice-T plays a cop on Law & Order: SVU, while three of Body County’s original five members have passed away, but just last year won the Grammy for Best Metal Performance for their song “Bum Rush” from Carnivore, and now (QRO photos at a ’21 festival) come Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a ‘21 festival).

Body Count



Cherry Bombs, 5:45 PM

Wargasm, 4:35 PM

The Alive, 3:20 PM

Dropout Kings, 2:10 PM

Loudmouth Stage  

Rob Zombie, 8:35 PM

Get your Zombie on thanks horror-rock icon Rob Zombie (QRO live review). Recent years has seen Mr. Zombie spending more time making horror films than horror music, but there was 2013’s Venomous Rat Regeneration Vendor (QRO review) 2016’s The Electric Warlock Acid Witch Satanic Orgy Celebration Dispenser (QRO review), and last year’s The Lunar Injection Kool Aid Eclipse Conspiracy, so expect many-worded nightmares as he played his fourth Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival).

Rob Zombie

Chevelle, 6:35 PM

From Grayslake, Illinois comes the hard rock nu-metal of Chevelle, playing their third Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a ‘21 festival).


Jerry Cantrell, 5:05 PM

Guitarist and primary songwriter behind nineties greats Alice In Chains (see below), Jerry Cantrell was at the forefront of grunge. He’s gone on to do much more, even after the 2002 death of Alice singer Lane Stanley, collaborating with everyone from Metallica to Deftones, not to mention soundtracks like John Wick: Chapter 2.

Jerry Cantrell

Pop Evil, 3:40 PM

Michigan’s Pop Evil (QRO photos) come back to their third Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) behind last year’s cinematic & heavy Versatile.

Pop Evil


Airbourne, 2:30 PM

Solence, 1:20 PM


Revolver Stage


Theory of a Deadman, 7:45 PM

From up in British Columbia, Theory of a Deadman (QRO photos) bring rock hits like “Bad Girlfriend” back to Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival).

Theory of a Deadman


We Came As Romans, 6:20 PM

D.R.U.G.S., 5:10 PM

Trash Boat, 4:00 PM

Bloodywood, 2:45 PM

We Came as Romans

DW Presents Stage


Widow7, 6:30 PM

Silly Goose, 5:20 PM

Sevvven, 3:50 PM

Scarlett O’Hara, 2:30 PM

BREED, 1:20 PM



Space Zebra Stage


Red Hot Chili Peppers, 9:00 PM

How can you be into music and not know the Red Hot Chili Peppers? RHCP (QRO photos) emerged from the same sweaty Los Angeles eighties music scene that gave birth to Jane’s Addiction & more, and the Peppers (QRO photos) mix alt-rock with the funkified bass of the one-and-only Flea plus the sexy energy of singular frontman Anthony Kiedis. Along with drummer/Will Ferrell-look-alike Chad Smith and guitarist John Frusciante, the band racked up awards and record sales with such classics as Mother’s Milk, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, “Higher Ground”, “Under the Bridge”, and much more. Frusciante left in 1992 to be replaced by Jane’s Addiction’s own Dave Navarro, before Frusciante returned in 1999 for the band’s biggest selling record ever, Californication.

More recently, Frusciante has left again, to focus on his solo work (QRO review), replaced by upgraded touring guitarist Josh Klinghoffer for 2011’s I’m In You (QRO review) and 2017’s year’s strong The Getaway (QRO review). But of course, Frusciante came back, ‘cause ain’t nothin’ stoppin’ the Red Hot Chili Peppers (QRO photos), who come to headline Louder Than Life touring (QRO ’22 live review) behind this year’s Ultimate Love.

Red Hot Chili Peppers

Incubus, 6:55 PM

A band that’s been more successful than you realize, for longer than you realize, is Incubus (QRO live review). Deftly balancing between styles and scenes (QRO photos at a ’22 festival), acceptable to the mainstream and the indiesphere, Incubus (QRO photos) come behind 2017’s eighth studio album 8. So, catch Incubus (QRO photos at a festival) at back at Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) – If Not Now, When? (QRO review).


The Pretty Reckless, 5:00 PM

We all first knew The Pretty Reckless (QRO photos at a festival) as the band fronted by Gossip Girl’s (very pretty) Taylor Momsen. But Gossip ended so long ago there’s been a reboot, and The Reckless (QRO photos at a festival) are still going strong (QRO ’22 photos), returning to Louder Than Life.

The Pretty Reckless

The Struts, 3:25 PM

Everything old is new again, so embrace the unabashed glam classic-rock revival of The Struts (QRO spotlight on). In 2020, they (QRO interview) recruited a murder’s row of guest stars as they brought “Another Hit of Showmanship” (QRO review) with Strange Days (QRO review), and now to Strut at Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival).

The Struts

Dirty Honey, 2:00 PM

Los Angeles’ Dirty Honey put out their own self-titled EP, and the single “When I’m Gone” topped the Billboard Mainstream Rock Songs chart, the first time ever for an unsigned band.

Dirty Honey

Radkey, 12:50 PM

A decade ago, St. Joseph, Missouri’s trio of brothers – Dee, Isaiah, and Solomon (QRO photos at a festival) – rebooted punk rock as Radkey, and they’re the go-to answer for your favorite discovery at Louder Than Life, playing it for it for a second time.


Disruptor Stage


Action Bronson, 8:10 PM

From Flushing, Queens, Action Bronson (QRO live review in Brooklyn) moved from gourmet chef to rapper with panache on his 2014 major label debut, Mr. Wonderful. He still keeps his hand in the foodie game thanks to his own television shows, but comes to Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) behind this year’s Cocodrillo Turbo.

Action Bronson

Bayside, 6:30 PM

Queens’ emo-punks Bayside (QRO photos) come to Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) for the fourth time (QRO photos at a festival), after last year celebrating ‘Twenty One Years of Really Bad Luck’ (QRO ‘21 live review).



Joey Valence & Brae, 5:10 PM

carolesdaughter, 4:00 PM

The Native Howl, 2:50 PM

As You Were, 1:40 PM


Loudmouth Stage


Alice In Chains, 7:55 PM

Alice In Chains (QRO photos) came out of the nineties grunge scene with records like Facelift, Dirt, and Jar of Flies – their song “Would” was even in the very-of-its-era Singles.

Unfortunately, frontman Layne Staley’s drug abuse sent the band into hibernation before his 2002 death (followed later by bassist/Celebrity Rehab patient Mike Starr), but the rest of the group has kept going (QRO photos), with new singer William DuVall (QRO photos with DuVall), with word of a new record this year (QRO photos).

Alice In Chains

Papa Roach, 5:50 PM

In 2000, California’s Papa Roach (QRO photos at a festival) burst through with hit alternative metal album Infest and it’s iconic single, “Last Resort”. That album might be old enough to graduate college now, but Papa Roach will play it & the greatest hits back at Louder Than Life.

Papa Roach

Jelly Roll, 4:10 PM

The country-rap of Tennessee’s Jelly Roll comes up to Kentucky for Louder Than Life.

Jelly Roll

The Joy Formidable, 2:40 PM

Even in their early years, Welsh powerhouse The Joy Formidable (QRO spotlight on) had already taken Europe (QRO photos at a European festival), Canada (QRO photos at a festival in Canada), Australia and even The States (QRO photos) by storm with expertly played opening slots alongside Passion Pit, Temper Trap, and Editors. The impressive trio (QRO interview) got a killer live show (QRO live review) to go with 2010’s killer The Big Roar (QRO review), 2013’s Wolf’s Law (QRO review), 2016’s Hitch (QRO review), 2018’s AAARTH (QRO review), and last year’s Into the Blue (QRO review) – so be ready for a jolly good time (QRO photos at a festival) as the band (QRO live review) delivers! Be sure to catch killer frontwoman Ritzy Bryan (QRO interview) as she comes to rock Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival) with bassist Rhydian Dafydd (QRO interview) and exuberant drummer Matt Thomas (QRO live review).

The Joy Formidable


The Warning, 1:25 PM

The Strangers, 12:20 PM

The Warning

Revolver Stage


Bad Religion, 7:15 PM

Riot Fest has recruited a ton of veteran punk acts, and there might not be a more veteran punk act than Bad Religion (QRO photos at a festival the weekend before). Born in the eighties punk scene of southern California, Bad Religion’s aggressive yet intellectual, and socially minded, punk has inspired/influenced so many bands that those bands are even influencing new acts today. While they peaked commercially in the early nineties with Recipe For Hate and Stranger Than Fiction, guitarist Brett Gurewitz’s 1994 departure only lasted until 2001, and even if they’ve basically been making the same record for years now (most recently 2019’s Age of Unreason), it’s a good record, with singer Greg Graffin’s literate lyrics still on target. Oh, and they founded Epitaph Records, which has been home to big names like Alkaline Trio and Descendents, and play Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a festival).

Bad Religion

Anti-Flag, 5:45 PM

Steel City punks Anti-Flag (QRO photos at a festival) left the major labels behind on 2009’s The People Or the Gun and 2012’s The General Strike, but have kept up their activism – the band attempted to put on an anti-G20 show when the world leaders forum came to their native Pittsburgh, only for it to be closed down due to massive police presence in the city (and lack of parking). More recently, they’ve been heavily involved in the worldwide Occupy movement, so of course this ain’t their first Louder Than Life (QRO photos at a punk rock festival).



Oxymorrons, 4:35 PM

Crown Lands, 3:25 PM

Shaman’s Harvest, 2:15 PM


DW Presents Stage


Lines of Loyalty, 6:00 PM

Rivals, 4:30 PM

Heartsick, 2:55 PM

Normundy, 1:30 PM

Lines of Loyalty