The 3rd Annual Journeys Alternative Press Music Awards took the party south this year, traveling down the road from Cleveland to Columbus, specifically the Schottenstein Center in the heart of the campus of the Ohio State University. Each of the previous ceremonies took place in Alternative Press’s hometown of Cleveland, but with the Republican National Convention in town, let’s just say space was limited.

Back for the second straight year were hosts Alex Gaskarth and Jack Barakat of All Time Low. In the spirit of the political season, Alex and Jack took the stage in a “debate” format as fans used Twitter to vote for their favorite host for president of the Alternative Press Music Awards. It was a tight race, but the people spoke and Jack was given the nod.

This special night was not only to honor those receiving awards, but it was full of exhilarating performances, special guests, collaborations and many other surprises. Winners of the Vans “Off The Wall” Award, Yellowcard, who recently announced that they will be calling it quits later this year, really got things going with “Ocean Avenue.” Papa Roach brought the energy with “Getting Away With Murder” and an intense rendition of “Last Resort” featuring special guest Machine Gun Kelly. The “Shock and Awe” performance of the night belonged to Babymetal, the group described as kawaii metal or the fusion of J-pop and metal. They ripped through their single “KARATE” off of their most recent release, Metal Resistance, and then electrified the arena when “The Metal God” himself, Rob Halford of Judas Priest, joined Babymetal onstage for “Painkiller” and the anthem “Breaking the Law."

Things took a turn for the serious as The Ghost Inside were honored with the win for most dedicated fanbase. Late last year their tour bus collided with a tractor trailer head-on, leaving several members in critical condition and taking the lives of both drivers. Through all of the support, kind words and fundraising from fans, the Ghost Inside will be making a return to the stage as they were the first band announced for Warped Tour 2017.

Good Charlotte’s The Young and the Hopeless was tapped for the APMA’s first Classic Album Award. The group then took the stage to play several selections from that album, including the monster single “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.” Of Mice & Men later took the stage with an aggressive performance, including their new single “Pain," which really stirred the VIP pit into a frenzy.

Twiggy Ramirez approached the podium to present this year’s Icon Award to the exceedingly nightmarish Marilyn Manson. Manson graciously accepted the award, telling the audience that he had a place for it on his shelf, next to his baboon skulls. Andy Black, aka Andy Biersack, performed with his all-star band featuring members of My Chemical Romance, The Used and Black Veil Brides. This side project of sorts was quite the departure from Black Veil Brides, as it took aim at the pop-punk spectrum.

The ceremony’s headliners, A Day To Remember, took the stage without vocalist Jeremy McKinnon, claiming his flight was delayed. As part of a bit, the band asked the audience if there was anyone who would stand-in. The spotlight fell onto fellow Floridian Scott Stapp of Creed fame. Stapp took the stage and performed the Creed classic “Higher” with ADTR in a flurry of confetti, before McKinnon finally made it to the stage, luggage in tow, and performed several hits including their new single “Paranoia."

For the 3rd year in a row, The Alternative Press Music Awards paid tribute to the best the emo and alternative music scene has to offer with memorable performances and entertaining collaborations. The event puts an exclamation point on the efforts of so many artists both from a historical perspective and from the view of up and coming musicians throughout the year.

10 Unforgettable Marilyn Manson Moments

Judas Priest Albums Ranked

More From 96.5 KNRX