Mass Chaos Tour w/ Godsmack, Staind & Halestorm 05/06/12
Ford Center – Evansville, IN
Words/Photos by concertchk
Twelve years is a long time, but that’s how long it’s been since I last saw Godsmack and Staind live. I remember thinking these two bands are the biggest out there, heavy guitar riffs, crazy fans, and overall loud music. I survived several Godsmack concert pits, where being in front of Sully Erna, was the place to be. I knew it was time to survive again as The Mass Chaos tour rolled through Evansville Indiana Sunday night, with Godsmack and Staind driving the train. Halestorm and Brookroyal were along for the ride as well, and it would prove to be a night of good old fashioned rock music.
I tend to get to concerts way earlier then the average person, my opal Beth and I left our town around 10am in the morning knowing we had three hours in the car to get to Evansville. We managed to get there at noon, with no one but two friends of mine standing in line. I guess I sort of felt sad, because years ago there would have been several people standing in line for Godsmack, and Staind. Hell some even camped out as they were the “IT” rock band back in the day. Needless to say standing in line from noon on paid off. The Ford Center in Evansville is a brand new venue, so having a major rock show was a big deal for them. Event organizers pulled out all the security measures in the book including having folks remove their spikes, chains, no cameras, anything that looked dangerous wasn’t allowed. They were very strict, and that was just fine as you felt safe and taken care of. This was an early show, doors at 5:30pm with the show starting promptly at 6:30pm. Beth and myself landed smack dab in the middle of the PIT on the rail in between the lead singer and guitarist, or as we like to call it The Perfect Spot.
Brookroyal took the stage, a small rock band from St. Louis that got the crowd pumped and put on a good little rock show, the lead singer managed to stand on the rail and sing to the crowd. This was a great way to get the crowd moving for the amount of music they were going to be faced with the rest of the night, I’ve only seen Brookroyal once before at the Pageant, and I am still not very familiar with their songs. I do know they played “Jump” and a song dedicated to Drama Queens as the lead singer put it.
Halestorm was up next. Lzzy Hale and company never disappoint as she has a voice that makes you wonder how she can belt it out night after night. Hale really has a God given talent for singing and the only issue I had with Lzzy was the mic.It was either the sound guys didn’t turn it up, or they requested to have it turned down but I know I would have loved to hear her voice over all the guitar riffs that Joe Hottinger was putting out. It seemed like we did get the music, but missed out on the vocals that which should have been the highlight of the show. There set list consisted of tracks from there first album entitled Halestorm and new songs from there recently released album The Strange Case of Halestorm.
- Love Bites (So Do I)
- Mz Hyde
- I Miss the Misery
- Freak Like Me
- Familar Taste of Poison
- Rock Show
- It’s not You
- I get off on you
- Here’s to us
They did an amazing job, just wished the vocals were more dominant in the mix. Still a great set and I look forward to catching them for round four in a few months.
Staind and Aaron Lewis took the stage and opened up their set with “Suffocate” as if it was a decade ago (except back then they were a few pounds lighter). Aaron seems to be a shy guy, so he doesn’t do much talking or play to the crowd. Instead he stands in front of the mic and sings his heart out. Years ago, I seem to remember he would hardly look at the crowd, but on the first Sunday in May he did look at the front row and crack a few smiles to the ones that were singing along. He broke out “Country Boy” which he said “was a song about him” that he wrote, that was a nice moment, he put himself on display, which I don’t think I’ve ever seen Aaron do.
He might in his acoustic show’s as I haven’t had the opportunity to see him live there, but overall Staind rocked the house.. there set list consisted of:
- Right Here
- All I want
- So Far Away
- Country Boy
- It’s been awhile
There could be a couple more in there, as they played a mixture from past and present albums, along with Aaron’s solo venture.
Godsmack was the last to grace the Ford Center’s stage, Sully hasn’t changed much, might have gotten a little older and wiser, but overall looks the same. Scruffy little guy that knows how to play some music that’s for sure. He stated after the opening song which was “Awake” that “he didn’t talk much, he didn’t have too much to say to us, he just wanted to play some music, some good old rock music” and that’s just what he did. They moved right into “Straight out of Line”, “The Enemy” and then took off on something I’ve never seen them do. The jammed – just instruments, no lyrics, no vocals, just flat out play the guitar’s and drums. The song had a beat, and rock quality, but I found myself just watching Shannon Larkin the drum master and listening to whatever it was they were creating at the time.
They moved on to some of there older material, or what I like to call the songs that made them famous..
- Cry like a bitch
- Stay away from me
- Speak the truth
- Love, hate, sex, pain
- Dueling Drums (Sully & Shannon major props on this one)
- Go Away (where Sully clearly told the crowd off that was sitting in the stands, making sure they knew that it wasn’t a “big screen tv” they were looking at, it was a “real rock show”
I found that quite funny, he was wanting the crowd to be like the olden days, but when he asked the crowd how many of you are seeing Godsmack for the first time, the majority of the crowd screamed. That made me feel old.
Overall seeing Staind and Godsmack again after so many years, made me realize why I went to see them in the first place. They are both made up of great musicians. Yes they are talented, cocky, and still good looking, even though they scruffy after all these years. It was a great rock show enjoyed by multiple generations of rock and roll fans.