Sevendust at The Fillmore in Detroit, MI

Detroit Rock City gets a premium metal memory from the almighty rockers Sevendust and a stop on their Animosity 21st Anniversary Tour.

It’s been nearly three years since the D’ had a pre-Covid visit from the Georgia-based power-squad known as Sevendust. On April 30, a bustling Saturday night in the Motor City and we see two black tour buses arrive to the historic Fillmore and discreetly park in the shadows behind the venue. One is packed with mountains of musical gear, and one is loaded full of rock stars… more specifically 7D, waiting to make their 19th appearance on leg two of their North American tour commemorating the 21st anniversary of the band’s third album, Animosity. Tonight, we find our venue packed to capacity with anxious Detroiters sporting their best Sevendust concert swag. The proud words “Sold Out” hang across the box office marquee.

Fast forward to game time…  

 9:36 PM and the darkness of the Fillmore’s giant stage comes to life with piercing blue beams of light, accompanied by angelic voices chanting through the sound system as a misty fog begins to creep across the stage and out into the audience. Five shadowy figures can be seen moving across the stage to take their prospective positions for the night’s events. The fans recognize the silhouette of the Sevendust frontman, Lajon Witherspoon, and erupt into an ear-deafening roar of savage gleefulness.

A dramatic pause and the band fires into “T.O.A.B.” as the stage lights blast to full power and give us our first view of tonight‘s main event. Standing tall on a center stage riser, Witherspoon looks out across the thousands of fans with a grin of approval. Clad in all black, and wearing bright red leather gauntlets of rock-godliness, he shouts out a simple greeting… “Detroit, how the f**k are you?!“   

The band wastes no time taking the headbanging crowd to task, grinding right into the band’s megahit “Praise.“ Next up is “Trust,“ and midway through the tune, Witherspoon says, “Let me see your f**king hands in the air, I wanna see them bouncing! Detroit, show us how you rock, rock city… Let’s ROOOOCK!” Back into the jam, and the fans oblige thrusting horned fists in the air toward the stage. 

“Xmas Day” is next, and LW explains that we have all lost somebody. He goes on to say that guitarist Clint Lowery had recently lost his mother and this was for him. He then points to a youth in the front row and says to him, “Is that your daddy? Tell him you love him and thank him for bringing you here.“ Green and red lights overtake the stage and Clint moves to the mic to deliver the track’s soulful intro. “Dead Set” comes next, and Witherspoon thanks the crowd for all of the energy that they have given to the band. The band keeps things true to Animosity’s tracklist, and proceed into “Shine,” “Follow,” “Damaged,” and then “Live Again.”

Bassist Vince Hornsby works the stage like a prowling tiger as he thumbs out the low end of 7D’s huge auditory footprint. “Beautiful” and “Redefined” roll out next and drummer Morgan Rose keeps the skins tight and in the pocket with his impeccable timing, thundering kick drum, and unending energies. Guitarist John Connolly and Clint Lowery make a great team, grinding out the crunch, trading tasty licks, pinch harmonics, and cleverly applying wah slaps. Their beefy tones really give Sevendust a three-dimensional sound that will rip right through your tympanic membranes. 

The emotionally charged “Angel’s Son” comes next, followed by the head smasher “Crucified.” As the last track comes to an end, Witherspoon extends his hands high and yells “Deeetroit!“ Fog machines hit overdrive and he begins to fade away to a misty darkness as the band leaves the stage. A restless crowd begins to stir as they know a ruse is afoot. The band returns with a two-song encore and closes the night with the new track “Blood From a Stone,“ and the banger “Face to Face.“  The last note rings out and Witherspoon declares… “We… Are… Sevendust!“ And that’s officially the end… a hefty seventy-five minutes after its inception. 

Sevendust comes as a highly recommended, energetic, engaging, and powerful concert experience that will leave you with moshing metal memories of ticket monies well spent. If you haven’t seen this band live, you’ll not be disappointed. There are still a few stops left on this tour, so get those tickets today. You can head to the band’s official website for concert updates, details, and current news. While you’re there, be sure to copy grab a copy of the band’s latest release, Blood From a Stone. A thirteen-track, pulse-pounding experience that shows just how diversely talented these musicians really are (BTW that’s eighteen tracks if you opt for the deluxe edition!). So what are you waiting for? Go get some Sevendust today!

Horns up, rock on!

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About Jay Dunbar 54 Articles
Jay Dunbar is a professional photographer that enjoys wearing a multitude of hats. He is active in the commercial and stock photography arenas and currently owns and operates a Detroit based investigations firm and photography agency. Despite his many endeavors, Jay can frequently be found in attendance at your favorite concert venues, capturing breathtaking images of live performances of many genres of music. A skilled author and photographer, he could be described as a " Serial Music Journalist." Carrying the photo bug for nearly thirty years, Jay enjoys all styles of photography, testing new gear, and helping aspiring photographers, artists and models to develop their skills and learn their craft.