Three things I know: Sully is the man, this is America, and that was one helluva rock show at Pepsi Center on Tuesday night.
Like A Storm Auckland, formed in 2005 and from New Zealand, had Chris Brooks on vocals, guitars, and didgeridoo, Matt Brooks on guitars and vocals, Kent Brooks on bass, and Zach Wood on drums. Chris Brooks gave a quick lesson for what he needed, crowd participation on Love The Way You Hate Me, by telling people to yell, “Hate Me”, when instructed. Fans on the general-admission floor complied, but many in the seats yelled back, “Bron-cos!”. Chris also had fun with fans in the front row, coming off the stage to interact. They are a legit rock band. They hit hard, play loud, and have a great stage presence. Check their new music, Catacombs(iTunes).
Shinedown had Brent Smith on vocals, Zach Myers on guitar, Eric Bass on bass and production, and Barry Kerch on drums. Smith had the split the floor fans like the Red Sea, so he could walk down the middle and get up close and personal.
Formed in 2001, Shinedown knows how to work the audience. Smith instructed lazy listeners to get up out of their seats and join the party. Smith got people jumping, with a 1-2-3 count, and a small mosh pit got started in the middle. If you took a break and went outside because you were tired of waiting for Godsmack, you missed a cool acoustic session which took Smith and Myers to a small, raised section on the opposite side of the main stage. Listen to their recent lease, Attention Attention(iTunes).
Godsmack had Sully Erna on vocals and guitar, Tony Rombola on guitar, Robbie Merrill on bass, and Shannon Larkin on drums. Formed in 1995, Godsmack can still bring the goods. They started the show with When Legends Rise, and played other songs off their recent release, When Legends Rise(iTunes), including “Bulletproof”(video) , and their current release, Unforgettable. At one point, Sully said he was getting tired of looking at all the goatees and wanted to see some girls on shoulders, who were more than anxious to show their own “girls”, and helped get some cool lighting going with cell phone lights being turned on, and then got them going left to right, with a few lighters going up as well. Towards the end of the show, Godsmack played Rocky Mountain Way, and then Sully told listeners there was one more song. As they played I Stand Alone as the finale, no fans headed toward the exits. The mosh pit got bigger, the flames went higher, and people kept rocking out until the music faded out.
As the tour rolls on, Sully will tell Utah fans they were better than the Denver fans, and it won’t just be lip service, it will be true. Audience members had to be reminded what a rock show was supposed to be like. As Godsmack and Shinedown both got after the fans to get in it. Yes, there were quite a few older fans in attendance, but band members have also aged twenty years since their beginning, and they’re up there kicking ass. With an extra push from the front men, the crowd on the floor got more involved by hoisting girls on their shoulders. Be careful scouring YouTube for videos from last night’s show, as some may be x-rated. (Do people still use YouTube?) It helped turn the show into a classic rock show, but fans shouldn’t need to be reminded. Come on, Denver.