Carnival Of Madness Rocks Mohegan Sun

Black Stone Cherry, Halestorm, and Shinedown teamed up to create this year’s ultimate rock show accordingly named the Carnival of Madness tour. The tour brought a large turnout, especially with it being a hometown show for Halestorm who was celebrating their 19 year anniversary.

A fierce burst of fresh energy came about with Halestorm’s set. Fronted by a female rocker who’s voice is an instrument in its own right, the band kicked through a long set filled with songs covering their discography.

The set included “Apocalyptic” off their latest record Into the Wildlife and big hits such as “I Miss the Misery”. Hale’s little brother, RJ who has been in the band since age 10, had his moment to shine when he was able to amp up the crowd and go off on his own drum solo midset.

Halestorm’s live act embodies the spirit of rock n roll with riveting guitar solos, powerhouse vocals, and strong lyrical content.

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The eerie lullaby opening music starts and with the crack of a curtain falling, Shinedown takes the stage.

The band eagerly takes the catwalk interacting with fans at every chance they get. The intensity of singer Brent Smith can not only be seen through his stage presence but with his powerful, demanding vocals.

The show starts off with a strong message: with Shinedown there is a personal connection between artist and fan. The charismatic frontman encourages the crowd to shake hands with fellow concertgoers and he practices what he preaches. Reaching into the photo pit Smith shook hands with every photographer, security officer, or worker in sight before starting the next song.

“Shinedown, we don’t do good times,” Smith explained. “You see, we need you to have an unbelievable time. But there’s a little bit of a disconnect, but we can fix that…together”. Just like that the crowd is split down the middle and Smith is running through everyone trying to make a personal connection with individual people. It’s easy to see the band genuinely believes in their fans and is making music for them.

Thrusting their instruments around, Shinedown gave it all they had in them. A performance of “Asking For It” had fans in the venue moving in sync to the sound of music while “Enemies” had the crowd jumping and raging.

Bassist and keyboardist Eric Bass takes the stage to do a cover of Radiohead’s “Creep” before a crowd singalong paired with a stunning light show for “I’ll Follow You”.

The mood turned serious when Smith asked the crowd how many times rock music “has been there for you when you needed it most.”  An emotional response from the crowd quickly proved that this music does inspire.

Shinedown finale was an incredible performance of “Sound of Madness” for the strongest vocal performance of the night.

The bands playful antics on stage and messages set to encourage hope show the band is together for the right reasons. With Shinedown you not only get a solid rock show, but you get a sense of belonging and community which is something often missing for the music scene.

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