Withering Soul - I'm not really in to black metal, but these guys seemed competent enough at what they were doing. They probably weren't helped by the fact that they were the first band to go on, so I guess they were kind of the guinea pigs as far as the sound goes. I still think they did a great job kicking off the festival. Gracepoint - I'm not exactly the biggest prog fan, but this band really impressed me. They're just complex enough to make it interesting, yet they keep enough hooks in there that even a simpleton such as myself can follow along . Id definitely go see these guys again. Agent Steel - I was not familiar with their music at all prior to this show, but I REALLY enjoyed their set. They're just...so...METAL Biomechanical - I've got their disc; some of it I like, some of it I don't. They pretty much had everything covered for me after the first few songs, then the rest of the set seemed kind of repetitive. They were definitely high energy and gave it everything they had, though. Eldritch - I've got their two most recent releases, both of which I like "okay", so I wasn't sure what to expect. I thought they came across EXTREMELY well live, and I really enjoyed their set from start to finish. Great way to close out a very good first night. Mirror Black - after all these years of Raven giving me Mirror Black promotional materials at ProgPower, I was determined to go see these guys sometime , and I'm glad I finally got my chance! I was impressed with their set, and they got the evening off to a great start. You guys definitely did not disappoint. Twelfth Gate - I just picked up their disc recently, so I wasn't overly familiar with it, but I had heard enough to feel like I could describe their sound to some of my friends who hadn't heard them at all...and I can definitely say they made me look like a total jackass . I had completely forgotten that they have a new singer, so this really wasn't the band I was expecting. It ended up being not what I really wanted to see, but I will give the singer credit for doing what he does extremely well. I think the guy's got a lot of potential as a front man, and I could see him doing a great job working a huge crowd like Ozzfest, or some other show that I'm simply too old to attend anymore . Ion Vein - these guys completely blew me away! I tried to think up at least one disparaging remark just to fuck with them, but I honestly couldn't come up with any . They were actually my second favorite band of the festival, and I would love to see this band again. I'll definitely be looking forward to their next disc. Nocturnal Rites - they were my main reason for attending, and they actually exceeded all expectations. Great songs, great sound, great performance...a perfect set, as far as I'm concerned. They're on my list of bands that I absolutely have to see again sometime. Morgana Lefay - I have Grand Materia; I really like a couple of songs, and I kind of like a few others. While they don't really blow me away, they put on a good show, and Im glad I had the opportunity to see them. My only complaint from the weekend is that it is extremely challenging, logistically, for those of us who flew in to town. Trying to get a cab service to send someone out to South Holland was a MAJOR pain in the ass. Special thanks to Bob, Paul, Derek, and Jeff for driving my wife and me around at one point or another...you guys RULE!!!!!!! If there actually is a cab company that services the area, if someone could perhaps post that information in the "Travel Details" section next year, that would be huge (nobody at the Hilton had any idea about cab companies, and the companies we called said they don't work the area). Overall, it was an extremely enjoyable festival...the venue was actually pretty good, the show was organized and very well run...I think they did a great job, and I would definitely consider going back again.