Shinedown review – rock showmen ride towards arena stardom

O2 Academy, Newcastle
With their positive affirmations, pop sensibilities and hair-metal heaviness, the Tennessee group unites rock fans young and old

‘We’ve played to five people and 500,000 people,” Shinedown’s vocalist Brent Smith yells, over a boom-boom-whack drum beat reminiscent of Queen’s We Will Rock You. “But tonight it’s all about you. Newcastle, let’s create some magic.” On his cue, almost every phone in the building is held aloft, every other arm is waving – as are drummer Barry Kerch’s sticks. When the lasers kick in, Smith’s “magic” spectacle is complete.

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