Review: P.O.D., THREE DAYS GRACE & SHINEDOWN in Glens Falls

POD – Photo by Jim Gilbert

Three Days Grace and Shinedown rocked the night Saturday, February 23 in the small town of upstate New York, Glens Falls at the local venue, Glens Falls Civic Center. Supporting this co-headlining tour was the over twenty-year old nu metal band, P.O.D. (Payable on Death). With the departure of Adam Gontier and the stories being shared online, everyone was dying to see what temporary lead vocalist for Three Days Grace, Matt Walst, had in store for us.
The mixed chatter amongst the crowd died as soon as the lights dimmed, letting everyone know that the fun was about to begin. P.O.D. started off with one of their latest singles, “Lost in Forever”. Through the speedy set list, “Youth of the Nation” brought out the youth in the crowd as they bounced along with the beat – some crowd-surfed, as others waved their arms around to the rhythm of the song. The following song, “Alive”, really filled the arena with a lively aura as the bright, colorful lights hit the audience’s glowing, joyful faces and shining down upon this incredible band. P.O.D. ended with Sublime’s biggest hit, “Lovin’ Is What I Got”, which got everyone in the whole venue to sing along.

Three Days Grace – Photo by Jim Gilbert

The anticipation for Three Days Grace’s arrival kept building up as the crew set up the stage with a backdrop of a post-apocalyptic city in ruins. A sign stood there with a drape covering what was really behind. They continued to place objects like HAZARD barrels, and then the fog machine began to work its magic. Smoke began to roll across the vacant stage and the quiet background rock music grew louder and then changed to Rage Against the Machine’s hit “Killing In the Name”. The crowd began to bob their heads along to the beat, singing along, all having no clue what was about to occur next. The music was cut off as the whole venue was enveloped in darkness. The mysterious sign’s lights flickered and the drape fell, revealing a sign that read “WELCOME TO FABULOUS LAS VENUS NEW YORK.” The music changed to an eerie song sung by Nancy Sinatra, “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)” along with the sound effects of a rainstorm. The stage lit up with a blue hue, and the rain sounds ended as drummer, Neil Sanderson, emerged from below and sat behind his kit. Next to arrive was keyboardist, Dan Rosenoer, who sat in his perch next to Neil. Following Rosenoer was lead guitarist, Barry Stock, then finally, the Walst brothers, bassist Brad and Matt, emerged from the shadows. Matt stepped up to the microphone, preparing for their cue…the anticipatory silence with the exception of the wildly cheering fans. Neil started the rhythm of the beginning song, “Chalk Outline”, as Barry did his guitar riff, and the pyro brightened up the venue. The excited fans sang along with Walst, as he began to show off his vocal talents, blowing us all out of the water. The song ended with Walst doing a high jump from the platform below Sanderson’s kit as the nearby barrels shot up flames. The crowd continued to sing along to all of the songs from the setlist as well as crowd surf, jump up and down, and have the time of their lives. Following “The Good Life”, Neil and Dan did a piano and drum solo together. Then after Dan exited the stage for a brief break, Neil stayed on to do his legendary drum solo. Filled with wild beats, this began the encore of the band’s setlist. The final two performances were a Limp Bizkit cover, “Break Stuff”, featuring the band’s tour manager, Shawn Hamm, and “Riot”. Overall, it was a killer performance!

Shinedown – Photo by Jim Gilbert

After clearing the stage, it was Shinedown’s turn to blow us all away. A banner was raised in front of the stage bearing Shinedown’s logo. The eagerness of the crowd rose with every ticking minute, wondering what their arrival would bring. Finally, the background music was cut, darkness swallowed the venue, and behind the banner was a brightly lit computerized orb. The banner dropped and a series of videos appeared on the screen, all of which blurred together. Then the drummer began to hit his beats as a series of colorful lights washed over the excited faces. The stage, then the voice they’d all been waiting for emerged from an unknown location. Eyes of eager fans searched wildly to see the rest of Shinedown on a stage in the middle of the venue. The lyrics of “Enemies” invaded fervent ears then suddenly stopped, as front man Brent Smith, guitarist Zach Myers, and bassist Eric Bass are escorted to the main stage where they finished the number. The following song had everyone clapping along to the beat of the drum as Smith encouraged them and a familiar guitar riff accompanied the rhythm, then the crowd all sang along to the highly energized track, “Devour”. The rest of the setlist went by fairly quickly and each had its own soothing melody. Taking a break from the calming music, the next familiar tune to fill our ears was one that famously promoted The Expendables, “Diamond Eyes”, a sea of voices chanting “Boom-lay, boom-lay, BOOM!” The high energy returned, having everyone jumping to the rhythm, pumping their rocker horns, and singing along with the lyrics. Shinedown continued their acoustic setlist, with the exception of “Sound of Madness”, bringing back the energy. They covered several songs acoustically, including Lynyrd Skynrd’s “Simple Man”, all performed on the center stage. The setlist ended with their latest record’s leading single, “Bully”, a fantastic way to close the evening.

All in all, the concert was incredible, filled with lively spirits of the crowd and the perfectly balanced setlist leaving the crowd in high spirits. Various moments stood out, all equally amazing and mind-blowing. Most importantly, was the strong connection between the bands and the ever-adoring fans, one that carried on throughout the evening. This certainly was an unforgettable night.