PAWNS & KINGS TOUR
ALTER BRDIGE, SEVENDUST,
CLEVELAND, OHIO | AUGUST 8, 2023
By Neil Shumate, OOTB Publications
Following a brief intro, Alter Bridge crushed with opening song “Silver Tongue” and the four-piece continued to dominate the stage throughout their 90-minute set of heavy rock.
If unaware, the supergroup of sorts also includes Creed members: guitarist Mark Tremonti (who also has a solo project: Tremonti), bassist Brian Marshall and drummer Thomas Scott Phillips.
Lead vocalist Myles Kennedy (also from Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators with guitarist Slash of GnR) has a distinct powerhouse vocal range with unmatchable wails, his singing was spotlighted during acoustic crowd singalongs “In Loving Memory” and “Watch Over You” alongside Tremonti.
Tremonti stands out as an enthusiastic performer—he smiles, grunts and you can see him mouthing “c’mon!” as he digs into his guitar, notably during epic song “Cry Of Achilles.”
Alter Bridge shined when the three member string section (including Kennedy on rhythm guitars) stepped forward together to rock out with harmonious instrumental slayings during the set.
Touring in support of their seventh album Pawns & Kings, for which the tour is named after, the band performed a few new songs including the show opener as well as “Sin After Sin” and “Fable Of The Silent Son.”
A flawless rock and roll experience. A fan yelled out, “Cleveland rocks!,” to which Kennedy replied: “Yes! Cleveland rocks very much so! Cleveland definitely rocks!”
(On a side note: Creed recently announced a reunion via social media; the first show since their hiatus in 2013 will be April 2024 at a summer cruise event.)
Having the original lineup since 1994, Sevendust is a tight outfit and the live set proved their comradery with one another; they never missed a beat with their sincere togetherness.
The five members are always looking forward and focused on their fans to deliver an animated, hardcore performance. They played some favorites and more including: the heavy “Denial,” crowd sing along “Angel’s Son,” brutal opener “Face To Face” and closing song “Shine.”
Smiling and waving, lead vocalist Lajon Witherspoon reflected on the pandemic and thanked the fans for still being there through it all.
Late last month Sevendust released their 14th studio album Truth Killer, and it’s a banger. With the fresh release, the band performed new songs “Everything” and “Fence,” during which the crowd swayed their arms.
Lucky for attendees, Mammoth WVH was able to perform this tour date as they’ve also been co-currently opening for Metallica on certain stadium tour dates.
The hard rock band, led by late guitarist Eddie Van Halen’s son Wolfgang, is a fierce five-piece. Wolfgang is a true entertainer, he not only knows how to shred but he can also carry a tune as was proven during performances of “Distance,” “Epiphany” and “Don’t Back Down.”
After expressing thanks, Wolfgang recalled to the crowd, “We played one of our first ever headliners two years ago here in Cleveland!”
Last week the band’s second album Mammoth II was released and from the album they performed “I’m Alright,” “Take A Bow” and others.
The summer leg of the Pawns & Kings tour concludes at the end of this month.
ALTER BRIDGE (click photos to enlarge)
SEVENDUST (click photos to enlarge)