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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Shinedown rock CMAC during Carnival of Madness August 16, 2013



What: Live Concert Review
      Carnival of Madness
Featuring:
      -Shinedown

      -Papa Roach
      -Skillet
       -In This Moment
       -We as Human

Where: CMAC outdoor amphitheater
Canandaigua, NY
                This past Friday saw the emergence of one of alternative rock’s premiere North American Festivals come to CMAC. Carnival of Madness rocked CMAC on Friday, August 16 with a lineup featuring: Shinedown, Papa Roach, Skillet, In This Moment & We as Human. Perfect weather and CMAC’s already beautiful location provided a great experience for the festival. In short, most of the bands performing played above average despite some off centered sound. The festival was worth going to, and Christian hard rock group Skillet proved they are full of talent , energy and enough spunk to carry them well into the future as they proved to be the best band at Carnival of Madness.
               Carnival of Madness Background Intro  

 Just three years old, Carnival of Madness has had annual success coming off of the collapse of heavy metal festival Ozzfest. Unlike Ozzfest, COM features more alternative groups than metal bands, however metal is no stranger to the festival as some heavy groups are featured in its lineups.
It’s a new festival for a new age of music reminding fans that it’s not the 1990s anymore or even 2000’s where touring festivals Lollapalooza & Ozzfest ruled, but it’s the 2010’s. Carnival of Madness is a bit different than Ozzfest and other festivals in its genre because its actually somewhat of a carnival. There’s people on stilts, flame flowers, fire breathers, and unique stage set ups that are designed for a carnival. In all reality, a general warm feeling of friendliness seems to flow from Carnival of Madness, even though some of people and bands performing there are a bit on the weird side (let’s not forget the Madness part).

 We as Human Review
Opening the festival was hard rock group We as Human. The group is a Christian metal rock pop band, and their melodies and lead singer’s powerful voice provided a decent worth wile set to listen to for an opening band. Their sound wasn’t surely bad, as some opening groups can be.  They seem to fit directly into the festival with their music and stage energy.

In This Moment Review
                Following We as Human was heavy-hard-core metal group In This Moment. In This Moment has have some success lately with their new album, Blood, and the self –titled song now blasting its way across rock radio stations for almost a year now.  In this Moment is unique because it’s one of the very few hardcore groups featuring a female lead singer making them one of the most anticipated groups on the bill. Their performance at Carnival of Madness no doubts shows that although the other musicians of the band are good, the group is clearly behind female lead singer Maria Brink. Maria proved her dancing abilities are in top notch as well as her voice. Almost every song she changed something different about her impressive outfit. To each side of her were two female dancers who, for the most of the time, was complete in sync with Maria, giving the audience one heck of a show. Maria Brinks showed that she can sure indeed scream and sing live as well as she can in the studio. Although In this Moment maybe a hardcore metal group, Maria’s showmanship and their entire stage set up provided an extremely entertaining time at Carnival of Madness 2013.

Skillet Review
                Completely different than In this Moment, Christian hard rock band Skillet graced the stage as the afternoon late summer sun sank lower in the sky. From the moment they came on stage to the very end, Skillet rocked. Their energy blasted off into the crowd. It was the first group of the evening where most of the crowd stood up, cheered and jumped around for. Like Shinedown, Skillet has had some huge success lately, and watching everyone around cheering and singing to their songs proved this to the full extent. It was truly amazing witnessing the energy the crowd gave back to a band, who, in just under ten years ago, were mostly performing in churches. Having seen one of their church shows, the band’s live show has surprisingly not changed since their beginning-which is an extremely good thing. Lead singer John Cooper bounced from one end of the stage to the other nonstop, pumping up the crowd. His wife Korey blasted away on guitar and keyboards, following right alongside him providing an excellent combination. Let’s not forget extremely talented drummer and singer Len Ledger, who’s shouts on Hero, Awake & Alive and many other Skillet songs are just as good live than on the radio if not better. So it’s clear and easy to say that Skillet is enjoying some much well respected love & fandom lately. Their efforts prove that they are one of the more promising hard rock groups of the past half dozen years, and no doubt the best on Carnival of Madness.

Papa Roach Review
            Based on many assumptions, it’s somewhat easy to say that as an alternative rock fan, or just any music fan that knows who they are, you either love Papa Roach or hate them. There is no in between.  So when they came on stage as the opening group for Shinedown, it was surprising to see most of the crowd actually jumping up, swaying to their beats and cheering. The crowd proved that yes indeed, Papa Roach still do have plenty of fans out in the world today who still love them and perhaps always will.
                Papa Roach saw great success in the early 2000’s bending on the rap rock genre with their hit album Infest.  Since then, their popularity has swayed back and forth with the somewhat decline of the genre of music their categorized in. However, the band still does enjoy radio time with new singles such as ‘Leader of the Broken Hearts’ and ‘Where did the Angels go?’.  When coming on stage at CMAC during Carnival of Madness, despite the crowd’s up and beat energy, the first few songs the band performed did sound a bit off. But as Papa Roach continued to play, their sound improved as well as their lead singer who was the only one of the tour to jump into the crowd. By the end of their set, Papa Roach’s performance was surprisingly well above average, and the crowd sang along wildly to ‘Scars’ and ‘Last Resort’. Despite most of their popularity coming from earlier in their career, Papa Roach proved they can still perform and entertain a large crowd at a festival in today’s music world.

Shinedown Review
                As the night settled in, so did Shinedown. They came out on stage with literally a boom, with fireworks, pyro blasters and giant flame blasters that shot off into the air above them. Not only that, but Shinedown brought on stage with them for the first song actual flame throwers-people that can flow flaming sticks in the air and catch them. This truly proved to everyone that they were indeed at Carnival of Madness. As if that were enough, Shinedown’s outfits, although extremely weird with dresses & kilts, fit right into the festival.
                Like Papa Roach, during the first or few songs, Shinedown were a bit off. Even the lead singers voice sounded way out of sync as if he’d lost it. Yet, by the third song, Brent Smith’s vocals were right on target, screaming and singing out into the night. Shinedown is known for great vocals, and last Friday night lead singer Brent Smith proved this indeed that they are on of the best in the world of rock today. His voice is extremely powerful and could be well heard over any instrument of the band. The fire blasting and loud sound booms continued throughout the night, actually blending in well with Shinedown’s type of hard edged rock n roll. Shinedown’s set continued with songs like ‘Devour’, ‘Crow and the Butterfly’, ‘I’ll Follow you’ and ’45.’ The bands music however, did not flow evenly nor matched to Brent Smith’s vocals. The guitars and drums were off centered, and some of the time it was hard to tell what songs the band was singing if you weren’t paying attention to the lyrics. The sound itself was incredibly loud as well, but for a festival like this, that’s an exception.
Shinedown may have been slightly off on Friday Night, but they are still extremely talented musicians who’s fan base is growing every year. The group has done it all, from playing small bars and clubs (They actually played The Lost Horizon in Syracuse around eight years ago), to headlining big rock festivals like Carnival of Madness. Their performance at Carnival of Madness was still decent and greatly enjoyable despite the sound issues and difficulties.

Overview
An amazing friendly moment of the festival came when the lead singer of Shinedown brought two boys from the crowd. The singer explained they were heroes because they saved someone’s lives by pulling them out of a burning car on the 90 freeway. The moment was inspiring to say the least, and Shinedown even dedicated the next song to the two guys that came on stage that were heroes.
In overview, Carnival of Madness is a festival worth going to in today’s jam backed festival world. The talent in this year’s festival was sure to be noticed, and the overall friendly attitude, stage set up and weirdness proved its uniqueness. Hopefully the festival will enjoy enough success this year to return to the rock world for another outing.

Shinedown’s set list August 16, 2013, CMAC
1)      I’m Not alright
2)      Enemies
3)      Devour
4)      Unity
5)      The Crow & The Butterfly
6)      Adrenaline
7)      I’ll Follow You
8)      Diamond Eyes
9)      If you Only Knew
10)   Amaryllis
11)   45
Encore:
1)      Sound of madness
2)      Second Chance
3)      Simple Man (Lynyrd Skynyrd Cover)
4)      Bully

Carnival of madness Overall Rating:
3.5 Out of 5 Stars              ***/*
We as Human                    ***        3 out of 5
In this Moment                 ***        3 out of 5
Skillet                                    *****   5 out of 5 Stars
Papa Roach                         ***        3 out of 5
Shinedown                         ***        3 out of 5

PHOTOS!: Photo Credit JUSTIN TARBELL











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