Scott Stapp electrifies fans old and new on The Space Between the Shadows Tour at Saint Andrews Hall with support from Messer and Weapons of Anew.
Getting things started is hard rocking Weapons of Anew. Led by vocalist Ray West and guitarist Freddy Ordine, these guys crank out a mix of hard rock that at times is melodic, yet transitions into heavy riffs and soaring leads. And drummer Chris Manfre is a beast on the drums laying down a rapid-fire beat. Their set is brief, but it packs a punch and the crowd loves it. They surely have the fans primed for the rock to come this evening.Messer from Dallas, TX comes out of the gate rocking hard with “Everything Beautiful” from their 2018 debut album. Their set is fully comprised of songs from that album including “Still Better Off,” “Make This Life,” and “Save Myself.” They have the crowd fully engaged from start to finish and are a perfect complement to open for Scott Stapp. Lead singer Dereak sings with conviction and works the whole stage. They close out their set with the ripping and aggressive “Simple Man” and “Throw It Away.” Given the reaction tonight, they should be gaining many more fans throughout this tour. And finally the time has arrived for the headliner that fans have been waiting for tonight. The lights dim and a slow intro starts as the band take to the stage. The crowd erupts in cheers as Scott Stapp takes the stage and they tear into the shredding “Bullets.” The stage is densely lit in green and smoke cannons shoot into the air. The sound is dialed in tight and Scott sounds phenomenal and is highly animated as he belts out the lyrics “Look at me. At least look at me when you shoot a bullet through my head.” Bassist Sammy Hudson and guitarist Yiannis Papadopoulos play off each other and work the stage from side to side. The other guitarist, Ben Flanders, seems to be having a blast as he sticks out his tongue and smiles while playing. The fans are eating it up. They go right into “Slow Suicide” from the 2013 release Proof of Life.
This tour is in support of the upcoming album The Space Between the Shadows. The first song tonight from it is “World I Used to Know.” It is a slower yet still heavy song that finds the stage in a sea of red lights and has Yiannis shredding. “My Own Prison” from Creed’s 1997 debut and “What If” from the 1999 release Human Clay have the fans singing along and rocking out with fist pumps and waving. Before jumping into “Overcome,” Scott takes a moment to tell fans “whatever life throws at you, get up and brush it off.” The band plays another new song, “Name,” that is already available ahead of the album release. It is a deep, personal song that Scott has revealed was written for his children. Scott makes use of the riser front and center throughout the night and also works the whole stage to play up to fans.
The next song, “With Arms Wide Open,” has fans pulling out their cell phones to capture the moment from the opening notes. It is one of those epic songs that everyone sings along to and waves throughout and was a Billboard #1 single back in 2000. Another new song, “Gone Too Soon” has Scott saying he was debating playing it. It is a song inspired by losing someone you love. He even mentions Chris Cornell, the iconic singer of Soundgarden who passed in 2017. The song itself has fans enthralled and has an arena rock anthem vibe to it.
Winding down the main portion of the set is another classic hit “Higher.” The fans are really giving it their all singing to this one and Scott is all smiles watching them and pointing to fans up front and in the balcony above. Yiannis is playing up to the crowd and lets out guitar squeals throughout the key parts of the song. They play “Purpose For Pain” from the new album before exiting the stage. Returning to huge cheers, they play another of the biggest Creed songs, “One Last Breath” from the 2001 album Weathered. Closing out the evening is “My Sacrifice,” another single from Weathered that hit #4. Scott thanks the fans and ends with “goodnight and God bless” before walking off.
Scott has certainly stepped up his game for this tour. He looks like he is in great shape, his voice is the best we have ever heard, he looks like he is having lots of fun, the sound is dialed in, and he and the band put on one hell of a great performance. It also looks like the album is going to be well-received by fans judging from their applause for the new songs tonight. Make sure to catch him when he comes through a nearby city.SCOTT STAPP
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