Godsmack and Staind come home to Xfinity Center – July 27, 2023
Two iconic Massachusetts bands, Godsmack and Staind, have been on a co-headlining run across America. Tonight, however, they came home to Massachusetts, with a show at Xfinity Center in Mansfield, a venue both bands are very familiar with.
When singer Aaron Lewis addressed the crowd, he mentioned coming to this venue to see Lollapalooza back in the 90s, watching the show from the lawn. Never in his life, did he think he’d be playing here. The crowd was very happy to see the band, who just before Covid, returned from a long hiatus, and will soon be releasing their first album in a dozen years, Confessions of the Fallen. While they opened with a song off that album, “Lowest in Me,” the set was filled with hits.
Songs like “Outside,” “It’s Been a While,” and “So Far Away” proved to be sing-along anthems just as strong now as they were two decades ago. Staind has always had a balance between heavier and lighter songs, and they closed out their set with the thunderous “Mudshovel.”
Lewis has in recent years become a very outspoken individual, with very strong political views. When the band was here with Korn last year, their set often felt like a political rally in between songs. Regardless of your views, that’s not what I go to a concert to hear. I was pleased this time around that the talk in-between songs never leaned this way tonight.
The rest of the band was powerful, with guitarist Mike Mushok showing off his seemingly endless energy, as he jumped all around the stage. The rhythm section of Johnny April on bass and Sal Giancarelli on drums were locked in, and never missed a beat.
Godsmack always feels at home on the Great Woods stage – I myself have seen them here at least a half dozen times. Following an intro video from Mix Master Mike, the curtain fell, revealing another curtain with the Godsmack logo, which then fell as the band kicked into “When Legends Rise.” The show started off with a handful of songs from the second half of their career, with “Crying like a Bitch,” the explosive “1000hp,” followed by a pair of tracks from their recently released Lighting up the Sky, “You and I” and “Soul on Fire.”
As the show rolled on, classic hits like “Awake,” “Voodoo” and “Whatever” got huge reactions from the crowd. The band’s choreographed drum duel, “Batalla de los Tambores,” is always a show stopper, with frontman Sully Erna jumping behind a second drum kit that rolls out from behind the stage. For the encore, a piano appeared for Sully to play their message of support, “Under Your Scars,” and finally their mega-hit, “I Stand Alone.”
Godsmack is a well oiled machine, running at 1000hp as they blow away audiences each night, leaving no fan disappointed.