It’s hard to believe it’s almost been 20 years since I first saw Godsmack on an Ozzfest side stage. That S/T debut record from the Boston natives may have been the last real shift hard rock experienced. Almost twenty years later finds the band touring in support of their 7th studio album When Legends Rise. Bringing Danish rockers Volbeat along wasn’t a bad idea either.
I’m not sure if this was considered a co-headlining tour or not but I can confirm Volbeat wasn’t relegated to standard opening act staging or set time. Playing almost 60 minutes on their own stage setup. The twelve song set leaned heavily (4 songs) on their latest record Seal The Deal & Let’s Boogie. Maybe a little too heavy as aside from “Black Rose” the songs started to have a sameness to them. To do that at the expense of standout tracks like “Heaven Nor Hell” and “My Body” seemed a shame. They did announce to the sellout crowd that they have a new album arriving in the coming months.
Setlist tweaks aside, there isn’t much else to complain about a Volbeat show. Singer Michael Poulson and crew executed their music to almost studio precision. They are in many ways a lot like Godsmack in the sense they have a created a sound all their own. But when you see them at no point should you anticipate being surprised. While flawlessly performed, there was a neutered feel to their show.
In 2007 Godsmack went on a little break and it seemed to help. While they may have passed up the last couple years of prime record sales that existed, the three records they released since the break are, in ascending order, their three best records since their debut. Something tells me Sully and the band agree as their 14 song set featured 10 songs combined from those 4 records.
They opened the show with the title track to their latest release. Followed by “1000hp” from their 2014 album of the same name. Then heading back to When Legends Rise for the track “Say My Name” before dipping back in their catalog for “Keep Away” off their debut album. Sully stopped the band in the middle of “Keep Away” to take the security staff to task for being a little rough with people crowd surfing. He would later dial it back telling the crowd that security had a job to do and everyone should just be cool. As an eye witness, I can tell you I thought security was being a bit over-zealous.
Somewhere towards the middle of the show, lead singer Sully Erna encouraged the strong Minnesota boys to get them girls on their shoulders. And though not directly requested, said girls showing some boobies was not something that was to be discouraged. While sharing no resemblance with a woman’s march, I’ll be damned if a Godsmack show isn’t a killer rock n roll good time. Filled with all the fire and booms your heart could desire. The way a rock show is meant to be. It was a good night. And judging the crowd, I’d say Monday, April 22nd, 2019, was also a good night for Minneapolis baby sitters.
Godsmack setlist –
“When Legends Rise”
“Say My Name”
“Cryin’ Like a Bitch”
“Batalla de los tambores”
“I Stand Alone”
Volbeat setlist –
“The Devil’s Bleeding Crown”
“Sad Man’s Tongue”
“A Warrior’s Call / I Only Want to Be With You”
“Let It Burn”
“Dead but Rising”
“Seal the Deal”