Summer is officially over and although the heat has died down on us (finally) it came for one last visit, matching the energy to the bands performing at Pointfest presented by 105.7 The Point in St. Louis, Missouri. The state's largest alternative rock fest (held at Hollywood Casino Amphitheater in Maryland Heights) was originally set for May 2022, but was unfortunately postponed due to unsafe weather conditions. Your hosts for the alt-rock fest were members of The Rizzuto Show - Scott Rizzuto, Tony Patrico, Moon Valjean and King Scott, along with Donny Fandango (10-2) and newest member, Liv Maddix (2-6)! Although some bands were not able to return for the September 24th date, honorable mentions who did perform are The Warning, The Struts, Halestorm, Highly Suspect and Papa Roach. What was an exhilarating rock n roll night from countless bands, Pointfest ‘22 was dedicated to Rizz Show member, Jeff Burton, who passed in August from cancer.
The heat was not enough to retain fans from gathering to experience what is an annual event in Maryland Heights and has been since 1993. While an exceptional amount of rock fans were bathing in the sun as they watched their favorite bands as well as discovering new ones, others found comfort in shade under trees and buildings throughout the venue. The three side stages were separated as the following - Point Black Stage, Crown Royal White Stage and Pop’s Nightclub Local Stage. Kicking off Pointfest at 12:30 on the Pop’s Local Stage were local rockers Interpersonal.
In all their indie rock glory, at 1:45, The Ricters stormed the Point Black Stage, at last grasping their moment to play Pointfest as they were originally set to open in 2020 (canceled due to pandemic) and set to open in 2021 (canceled due to technical difficulties). As festival-goers were in the palm of The Ricters hand by the end of their set, the band seemed to feel a sense of relief after finally gaining their moment to perform at Pointfest.
To the left on the Crown Royal stage were St. Louis natives and favorites Brookroyal, pleasing the crowd as they always have since 2008. The most captivating moment of their set was when lead singer Jack Wiese praised the late Jeff Burton and stated, “Without him playing our music, we wouldn’t be where we are now. We wouldn’t have been able to play for years for you guys.” Soaring through their set with unmatched energy, Brookroyal makes it known they are a crowd-pleaser.
Shifting gears back to the black stage, 2:50 in the blazing heat as the sun ascended high in the sky, was the place to be. Daniela, Paulina and Alejandra Villarreal (aka The Warning) invaded the stage as Pointfest-goers were introduced to the future of rock n roll, three extraordinary ladies from Monterrey, Mexico. Thrilling fans as they opened their set with “Z” from their latest album ERROR released this summer, the energy instantly escalated between the crowd and band. Daniela shouted, “Hello Pointfest! We came from Monterrey, Mexico to play for you. We are The Warning. Let’s rock!” Leading into 2021’s single “Choke”, much of the crowd chanted in unison with The Warning as The Point has ensured the band gets radio play of this song to grace its listeners. Traveling into “Money”, the energy rose even higher as all three girls presented perfect melodic harmonies. The Warning’s cover of “Enter Sandman” welcomed headbanging and shouting of lyrics, as the band was discovered through a viral video of their cover. Through the screeching riffs of “Dull Knives (Cut Better)” from their 2018 sophomore album Queen Of The Murder Scene, fans roared with enlightenment. Following was the question-authority track “Disciple”, calling to world leaders and urging people to “kill the system.” Closing out their flawless set with “Evolve”, the ladies were pleasantly content with the size of the crowd jammin’ to their songs the entire set. When the blaring sounds from The Warning came to an end, all three ladies joined together to bow as the crowd expressed how pleased they were. Daniela shouted “Muchas gracias Pointfest!” as Paulina invited everyone in for a picture with the band. Since Saturdays are Pau (Paulina) day and Pointfest was on a Saturday, my sister and I decided to shout in unison, “Happy Pau Day!” as the girls looked our way and smiled.
Gathering in the pit around 5 pm, fans were anxiously waiting to see their favorite acts of the night - The Struts, Halestorm, Highly Suspect and Papa Roach. As Luke, Adam, Geth and Jed stormed the stage at HCA, the dramatically fashionable band took over and began their immaculate set. The band started their set with “Primadonna Like Me” followed instantly by “Body Talks”, alerting the crowd of who The Struts are. Other notable tracks on the set included “I Do It So Well”, “Put Your Money On Me” and “Could Have Been Me”. As the band was very much interactive with the crowd, fans ate up all The Struts had to offer. With winks from Luke and silly faces from Adam, the band provided an unforgettable experience that will last a lifetime.
As the crowd grew throughout the amphitheater and the pit, Halestorm graced HCA with “Back From The Dead” to kick off their killer set. Traveling through a set of classics such as “Love Bites (So Do I)”, “Psycho Crazy” and “I Miss The Misery”, Lzzy Hale’s ethereal vocals still hold to powerhouse standards. Arejay Hale (aka Lzzy’s little brother) provided a thrilling drum solo, captivating the crowd with his expertise. Other memorable tracks performed included “Strange Girl” and “Wicked Ways.” As the band closed out their set with “The Steeple”, the crowd felt content as the night grew later.
As a colorful sign filled with funky font and chaotic colors of Highly Suspect hung high, HCA was crawling with fans who were thrilled for Johnny Stevens to rush the stage. Opening with “Natural Born Killer”, the crowd sang in unison as powerhouse vocals echoed throughout the amphitheater. Other honorable tracks included “My Name Is Human”, “Seretonia”, and “Bathsalts”. Closing out their set was heavier track “Pink Lullaby” with wailing guitars, screeching vocals and powerhouse melodies, leaving the crowd cheering for an encore.
Around 9 pm in the peak of the night, although it was a longwinded day being many fans gathered in the amphitheater when gates opened at noon, the final act of the night was set to take the stage. Jacoby Shaddix entered the stage with class as Papa Roach commenced the start of their set with “Kill The Noise”, featuring compelling vocals, a memorable chorus and fuzzy guitar riffs. When Jacoby screams mid-track “Shut uuuuuuppppp”, the crowd roared in bliss. Papa Roach’s set also incorporated two covers - “Firestarter” by The Prodigy and “Still D.R.E.” by Dr. Dre - amongst other originals such as “Getting Away With Murder”, “Swerve”, “Forever” and “No Apologies.” When the set reached “Scars”, the crowd thundered with excitement and belted out every lyric in solidarity. Near the end of their set, “Last Resort” blared over the PAs and Papa Roach officially closed out their set with “Born For Greatness”, ending Pointfest 2022 with a day full of countless memories.