When I walked into James Brown Arena. I thought I was just shooting Halestorm, Staind, and Godsmack. I had no Idea that there was 1 more support band to warm the crowd up for Halestorm. That is exactly what they did. The band Man Made Machine, from from Tempe, Arizona. Came out to the stage with high energy and some great hard rock to bring the people in the stands to their feet, and people on the floor to break a sweat.These guys have a love for music and fans, and it definately shows on stage. I hope I will be able to cover these guys again in the future, just because I know they are headed in the right direction of the music industry.
With a quick stage change, Halestorm erupted on stage. With a stunning light show, hard guitar riffs, and the Beautiful Lzzy Hale strumming and screaming her lungs out. It didn't take long at all to see everyone in the crowd getting excited as Halestorm won over their hearts and gained more fans. I can see now why Godsmack and Staind had chosen them to open up the stage for them. Lzzy is a passionate woman. Strutting around the stage in high heel boots, and at the same time be able to stay on lock with chords and interacting with the fans in the front row. I will be covering halestorm again in May, and I am sure they will have new fans making the long trip from Augusta to North Carolina to see them. I know I am definately excited to see them again!
What better way to kick off your co-headlining tour than with your fellow Massachusetts friends. And not to mention on your birthday!! That's right, Aaron Lewis turn 40 years old on the first day of tour. He spent it with some of the most important people in his life. His band mates, and fans! Staind was nothing less than impressive. Guitarist Mike Musho, had a ton of energy through out the set. Whipping his hair around, head banging, jumping, all while playing music at nothing less than perfect.Staind made sure to play al of their best music, changing the tempo thoughout the set lest. while playing the harder music, to keep the fans attention and moshing, then the softer stuff like outside, and its been awhile, to make sure they fans had more than enough energy to keep going. I will be covering staind again in May as well and I assure you they will be on of my favorites on the list.
And on to Godsmack... A band I have anticipated seeing since I was 13 years old. After 11 years, not only to I get to see them live, but had the pleasure of being one of the 4 photographers allowed to photograph them that night! Starting off with a hard rocking intro. They came out the gate with the song "Whatever" Which suprised me. Most artist will not start a setlist off with a hit song. But Sully anda guys know what to do to make their fans happy. And once the crowd heard that first note from the song, you know that they had accomplished the goal of gaining the attention of anyone who might have been on their phone sending a text. All hands were in the air, armed with Devil horns! From one hit song to another, Godsmack stayed full of energy. The 10th song on the list they slowed things down with the song "voodoo" in which afterwards, Sully left the stage. and moments later the lights dimmed. The crowd was unsure what was going on exactly. Was Sully done? Hurt?? or did he just need a minute to catch his breath?
The crowd found out, after about 2 mins of dark anticipation. The sound of bongo drums start. But it isn't coming from Godsmack drummer, Shannon Larkin. Second's later Shannon's Drum riser starts moving toward the front of the stage, and a second drumset on a seperate riser is moving out with Shannon. Sully is on the second set pounding bongos with his hands while the 2 drumsets setup on stage and face each other.Guitarist Tony Rombola, and bassist Robbie Merrill start playing riffs. It isn't long before Sully and Shannon join in together. after 7 or 8 mins of freestyle music making. Sully starts going into a drum solo. Challenging Shannon to a drum duel. Back and forth they play, and eventually joing back in together and finshed it off. Sully hopped of his drumset and grabbed a guitar while the was still cheering them on. They came back after the drum performance with "Cryin like a Bitch" and then finally thanking the fans for making the first night of The Mass Chaos Tour amazing! and finishes off with "I Stand Alone" After the 11 year wait to finally see them. I was more than impressed with the set list and performance. I hope I will see them again in the near future and it will not be another 11 year wait. If you have been thinking about going to The Mass Chaos Tour, but haven't bought your tickets for your city yet, I suggest that you do so immediately. Because this tour is only going to get bigger and better!!