If you heard a muffled boom tonight around 9 PM, that was just the sound of our minds being blown while watching the U.S. television premiere of the 2012 Hard Rock Calling music festival. The 2-hour special was simulcast on both Palladia and VH1, and it brought out all of the hard hitters like Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon, Paul McCartney, Soundgarden, Lady Antebellum and more! Never has the phrase “all killer no filler” been more appropriate, and from the moment Bruce kicked things off with an slow-burning hymnal version of “Thunder Road” we knew we were in for something special.
Now full disclosure, we were actually there on the front lines to see HRC live in London last month, but seeing it in full HD on Palladia was a totally different animal all together. When we watched former VH1 You Oughta Know artist Christina Perri perform “Jar of Hearts” and “Arms” in front of 60 thousand people, it felt just as close and intimate as when we first saw her perform in our office! It’s the magic of technology, folks.
Lady Antebellum and the Punch Brothers turned the iconic London park into a down home Nashville ho-down, while John Fogerty burnt the place down with his serious guitar shredding that left dudes half his age in the dust. Tom Morello stepped out from Rage Against The Machine and Audioslave to deliver some protest folk music aimed right at the heart of cooperate America with the Woody Guthrie song “Ease My Revolutionary Mind.” Soundgarden and Iggy & The Stooges went with the more punk tactic of assaulting the audience with bone-crushing volume.
After that the stage was set for Paul Simon and Bruce Springsteen to unfold their musical gifts and conjure up the music that has made then both legends. Simon gave us some stellar cuts from off of Graceland while backed with the irreplaceable Ladysmith Black Mambazo, and Bruce…well, he was just Bruce. He rocked, he rolled, and he brought out a Beatle! Paul McCartney stunned the crowed during Springsteen’s encore, and together they rocked and rolled so much that the cops showed up!
Wait, you still haven’t seen it yet? No problem, because it will air once again tonight on VH1 Classic at 9 PM! Or you can just click right here and all will be right in your musical world.
[Photo: Hard Rock]