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ICYMI: Epicenter, a huge music festival featuring acts you’d never thought you’d see this close to home, comes to Rockingham in May. See available tickets here. Get a look at the bands we’re most excited about below.

The One(s) You’ve Always Loved:

Live Foo footage from Wembley via YouTube

The Foo Fighters. No soundtrack to our adolescence would be complete without hits like Everlong and My Hero. Fronted by Dave Grohl (arguably the most talented man in rock) the Foo Fighters is the only band we love just as much now as we did when we were 12.

:: Honorable mention: Bush. With 18 consecutive top-40 hits (you’ll know Comedown and The Chemicals Between Us), Gavin Rossdale’s and his four-piece have been blessing our airwaves for decades.

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The One(s) You Should Get to Know:

Via giphy — see them perform on Conan.

Mastodon. Throw out everything you think about professional metalheads, because this Grammy-nominated band’s killer combination of melodic and howling vocals, lofty lyrics and thrash guitar are here to walk you through a journey of life — while still making you bang your head.

:: Honorable mention: The Cult. This leather-clad, eyeliner-wearing band boasts a lead singer who slays on the Tamborine, and rhythms that’ll turn the mosh pit into a dance circle. And Machine Gun Kelly: Whether you love to love him or hate him — or never heard of him before he had beef with Eminem — this artist will pull a major crowd to the festival’s Friday lineup.

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The One(s) You Might Have Forgotten About

Rob Zombie. Maybe it’s been awhile since you’ve blazed down the highway with Thunder Kiss ’65 at full volume — or thought about the level of fun this band brought to your playlists.

:: Honorable mention: 311. Yes, we know Amber is color of your energy, but when’s the last time you heard Creatures for Awhile? While a mix of rock and reggae usually makes us cringe, the sound was fresh for its time — and we still like it, in spite of ourselves.

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The Sound(s) to Soothe Your Emo Heart:

KoRn’s been playing since we were 5. See them celebrate their 20th year here. 

Korn. Jonathan Davis may have left the Adidas tracksuits behind, but he still brings the boom nadeaooom nabanema like no one else could.

:: Honorable mentions: Evanescence. AKA the band that, with the help of Amy Lee’s voice, produced songs you used to trick your parents into letting you buy metal CDs. Tool, the masters behind the antithesis to every shiny, pretty music video on MTV. And Killswitch Engage, a group who has always worn their heart on their sleeves — even while sharing a stage with Slayer.

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The Straight-Forward Rockstars

See full video here.

Black Label Society. If you’ve ever wanted to see someone play guitar with their teeth, now’s your chance. Seeing Black Label Society means watching Zakk Wylde shred through guitar solos that would set a mortal’s fingertips on fire.

:: In a class of their own: Meshuggah. Far from the thrash-metal sounds of the likes of BLS, this group takes mathematical precision to the stage with pounding drums and rhythms layered so precisely you’ll never catch them all the first time. Expect the pit to open up.

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The Throw-Way-Way-Backs

Judas Priest: Are they in their prime? Hell no. Are they living legends? Hell yeah. Honorable mention: The Prodigy. Unless Smack My Bitch Up still has you feeling some type of way.

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What else on the lineup should have made our list? Email hello@itsthesway and let us know.

This content was produced in partnership with Epicenter Festival. Featured image via @foofighters.

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