Editor’s Note: Aftershock Festival photographer Jennifer Pinckney wrote about her experiences taking shots at this year’s event.
On Oct. 24, the biggest rock show in California kicked off, with gates opening promptly on time to let in the very patient fans into the realm of rock. The amazing (and loud) day was filled with many amazing sets, enjoyed by the rough estimate of 25,000 fans who made the trek to Sacramento, CA’s Gibson Ranch Park, a half-hour northeast of the city. I could definitely see that many people when Shinedown and Slipknot came to the stage. Fans waited for them all day, and didn’t leave until their sets were done that night.
Seether put on a very good show, especially from a photographer’s point of view, truly lively and energetic. Marilyn Manson hung out in the crowd for quite some time with his fans. Shinedown greeted everyone with positive energy and encouraged the fans to shake hands with their neighbors. Vocalist Brent Smith kneeled in front of the photo pit and reached out to shake the hands of the many photographers. I’ve personally never had an artist take the time to shake my hand before, pretty amazing feeling. Slipknot ended the night, done up in their usual style, living up to the rumors of their sets: very lively, very active and their masks will make you have nightmares. As I have heard before from Slipknot: “It shouldn’t matter what we look like; all that matters is the music.”
The second day of Aftershock came way too soon, the first day flying by. The audience on the second day seemed smaller than the first, but it was still was a healthy amount of people. Some of the bands who really made a good impression were Issues, Sevendust, Sleeping with Sirens, All Time Low, Stone Temple Pilots, Coheed and Cambria and, of course, Deftones, who were just about the most perfect band to end one hell of a weekend. The band is from Sacramento, so most of the day’s audience was there for them, and they did not disappoint. It was a great way to finish off another fantastic year of one of the biggest festivals in the nation.