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GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (Chicago)

Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 3:06 PM

A preface. I'm doing this on my phone while at Six Flags outside Chicago. Pardon any typos, punctuation crap, whatever. I'm doing the best that I can. I took a few photos but won't be able to get them off my camera until I get home on Sunday. Sorry. Just couldn't justify dragging my laptop around with me on this entire trip.

First off, let me just say... Rockstar do a great job with their festivals. I have been to a combined total of 11 Mayhem/Uproar/Taste Of Chaos shows over the years and have never had a bad word to say about any of them. Kudos Rockstar; you do it right.

Got to First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (hereafter known as FMBA) at 5:30pm after a long day of travelling. I'd never been to a show there before. It's an enormous amphitheatre an hour outside of Chicago in desolate, middle-of-nowhere farm country. I saw cows. Not at the show, but nearby.

FMBA is the same premise as Molson Amphitheatre (Toronto), Gexa Pavillion (Dallas), Lakewood Amphitheatre (Atlanta), etc... except it feels bigger. A lot bigger. Not sure what the capacity is, but it's one BIG mother. And it's loud. I thought it was fantastic. Better than all the similar places I've been to.

Adelita's Way and Staind were ok. Neither are really my thing. They both sounded amazing. Really amazing. Again, great venue. The crowd was really into both bands.

I was in the pit. Now I assumed the pit would be like it is at similar venues. A small enclosed section of 100 - 200 people. Wrong. At FMBA it's the entire front of stage and about 100 feet deep. Best guess, it holds roughly 600+, maybe more. The pit was rockin' for A.W. and Staind.

So... Drank a crap load of beer and several free Rockstar energy drinks and some Red Bull too. I was bouncing. So pumped for the main event.

After Staind they set up the white scrim curtain covering the entire front of the stage. I love that.

Lights go out...

AC/DC - "For Those About To Rock" starts up

Spotlights circle the pit. 4 smokin' hot chicks that couldn't have been older than 19 climb onto shoulders and flash their BOOBS! The place goes fucking mental.

Sully's GIANT guitar-strapped silhouette looms behind the scrim. Curtain drops...

The Enemy
Keep Away
Cryin' Like A Bitch
Straight Out Of Line
Batalla De Los Tambores
Medley: Back In Black (AC/DC), Walk This Way (Aerosmith), War Pigs (Black Sabbath)
Whatever (with Sully's speech)
I Stand Alone

The pit was so crazy I was thrown from one side to the other, back and forth, up and down. Seriously intense pit action. There were probably 20 people crowd surfing during Voodoo. VOODOO! That's how hype it was.

Sully's voice was strong, confident and without a trace of past ailments. No fear, he's fully back to his strength as a vocalist. He amazes me every time just how powerful he is. Solid.

I finally got to hear Re-Align live. Tony's solo blew me away. His restrained brilliance is infectious. How the hell does he get that unbelievable guitar tone?

Robbie leaned over the barricade and hi-fived me during Whatever. Shannon threw his sticks out at the end of I Stand Alone and one cracked me in the face. It fell over the barricade and the security dude threw it into the crowd. Not exactly fair if you ask me. I touched it first!

I wish they had played at least one more song off The Oracle. I think Forever Shamed live is Godsmack at the top of their game. I love the drum battle, but with a short set I'd sacrifice it for 2 extra songs. Sick Of Life, Vampires, Moon Baby. C'mon, switch it up a bit. My opinion. No one freak out.

Shinedown came on with Sound Of Madness and a million fireballs exploded. After that they were horrendously boring, so I left.

The End.

Ask questions and I will try to answer them during breaks in travelling.

Replies to This Posting

  1. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphiteatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Now that is a review! So glad you had a great time! I'm sure you sang your heart out!!! LOL to the stick comment, yes you touched it first, wish you got it. Very cool with Robbie. Glad you had such a great memorable time. Voodoo, an excellent song live, you probably changed your mind on it. And Whatever, hope you sang for us, even though NO NY f C, I'm sure his speech was amazing, just like in Hamilton. Saw your pix, cool!! So cool.

  2. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphiteatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 3:28 PM

    Awesome recap of the show.

  3. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    Amazing review; thanks so much. So Shinedown played AFTER Godsmack? I would think Smack would close the show. Sounds like you had a blast and Godsmack is giving it their all like they always do. So looking forward to it in Raleigh next month!

  4. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 5:12 PM

    What a marvelous review. I am still laughing about the stick to the face? Is that mean?

  5. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 6:22 PM

    I don't think it's mean

  6. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 6:28 PM

    He probably enjoyed it.

  7. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 6:52 PM

    now i know exactly what I want in my life-Godsmack concert

    Great review razor,I'm happy you had such a great time.
    We can see it was a hell of a good show,but that is what we all expected from Sully
    To bad they didn't play Moon Baby but the rest is just great.
    so hi-five,stick,boobs you got it all

    P.S you forget to mention if Sully said halloo to me??

  8. Re: GODSMACK @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (Chicago)

    Thu, Aug 23, 2012 at 7:03 PM

    I'll take a stick in the face over not getting a stick in the face any day. It's the battle scars that earn you the memories of your life.

    Honestly (and not just because I am a Godsmack fan) but Shinedown should have played before them. There's no comparison. Godsmack wipe the stage with anyone they play before or after. That said, it gave me more time to drink and come down after a blistering set.