When a band releases a new album, not only is it exciting to hear the new music, but you know they will be touring to support it. As good as it is hearing new music, it is even better hearing it live. When Shinedown released their latest hit effort Attention Attention!, the countdown started for a new tour to begin. Fans were finally rewarded when it was announced the tour would kick off on February 20th at Hertz Arena in Estero Fl. If this wasn’t big enough news, Papa Roach would also be on the tour supporting their brand new release Who Do You Trust?. Capping off all of this, Asking Alexandria would be opening for both bands.
When February 20th finally arrived, so did the crowd at Hertz Arena. As a matter of fact, the crowd started arriving early and in droves. There was even a long line just to get in the parking lot! Fans were definitely excited for the show. You could see how thrilled the lucky fans that had lined up for the meet and greet experience. Usually it’s a slow steady stream of people to get into an arena with the openers not getting to play to a big crowd. Tonight though, the arena filled up quickly as no one wanted to miss a single song by any of the acts. First up to hit the stage was Asking Alexandria. Coming all the way from York, England, this hard rocking quintet had a great crowd that was giving them plenty of love. While they had a short time on stage, they made the most of it. With a big stage and a long catwalk extending out into the crowd, Danny Worsnop the singer, had plenty of plenty of room to whip the already excited crowd into a frenzy. When the C02 canons that were across the stage went off everyone loved it! As great as they look, when they go off you can feel the chill from them; neat! Of course, they played one of their big hits “Alone In A Room” to the delight of everyone there. Throughout their time on stage they sounded amazing and put on a great show.
After a lightning fast change over, it was now time for Papa Roach to take their turn on stage. With a 26 year career under their belts and ten albums out, including their latest Who Do You Trust?, there would be no shortage of hits to thrill the packed arena. Kicking off their hit laden fourteen song set was “Last Resort”. When the band started playing, their energy level was through the roof! Lead singer Jacoby Shaddix was in nonstop motion. When they played “Who Do You Trust?” from the album of the same title, somehow, they managed to bring the energy level even higher. That is a song that is meant for an arena! At one point during the show, Jacoby Shaddix went out into the audience and went across the width of the arena high fiving lucky fans all along the way. A special treat for everyone there was they for got to see them play their latest single “Come Around” live for the very first time. The final song Papa Roach played was “Born for Greatness”, and the name of the song is a perfect description for Papa Roach. It’s a good thing that this set took place in an arena, because if they played it in a smaller venue, they would have not only blown the roof off the place but they would have knocked down all the walls too.
With a huge white façade blocking the stage, no one knew what Shinedown had instore for its fans. When the house lights dropped and the façade dropped, everyone got to see the giant stage setup Shinedown had. With ramps going up and around drummer Barry Kerch’s drum kit, and giant video screens in the shape of exclamation points reminiscent to the album cover of their latest release Attention Attention!. When the band kicked off their show with “Devil” almost right away the pyro started, and huge flames shot out from the back of the stage. You could actually feel the heat from it out into the crowd. Partway into the show, the arena went dark and the entire band carrying flashlights left the stage and went down the catwalk to a small stage at the very end of the catwalk. When they got there, a drum kit raised up from underneath the floor. So, on a much smaller stage they continued the show playing “Amaryllis”. As Brent Smith was talking to the crowd, he said to everyone “This is your night, this is your show” and he and the band on the spot decided what they were going to play next. Bassist Eric Bass chose “Misfits” for the next song. Between the small stage and deciding what to play on the spot, this gave the show an intimate feeling. Leave it to Shinedown to make an arena concert feel like a small club show. Sure you can find copies of the setlists online, but everyone of their shows are different and the band wants everyone to have their own special show. Brent Smith asked the audience to take out their cell phones and lighters and light them up. When everyone did that the arena looked like a starlit sky then the band launched into “Second Chance”. When it was time to play “Simple Man” halfway through the song, the band made there way back to the main stage to continue the show. Of course, the exciting pyro continued and sparks showered the stage. They ended the night with “Brilliant” from their latest album.
With the loss of the Fort Rock music festival, this part of Florida was starved for great music. This amazing night of rock music more than satisfied all the rock fans around. For fans of Papa Roach and Shinedown, you’ll be treated to plenty of new music as well as their big hits. Then add Asking Alexandria to the mix and this becomes a can’t miss tour. The tour comes to an end on July 27th in Washington., along with several festival dates as well. So keep an eye out and make sure you get to see all three bands together while you can.