Skillet and Sevendust at the House of Blues in Las Vegas, NV

Skillet and Sevendust bring their co-headlining Victorious War Tour to the House of Blues in Las Vegas with support from Pop Evil and Devour the Day.

These multi-band hard rock tours are becoming commonplace and this Labor Day weekend Las Vegas is being treated to a killer lineup of four amazing bands. The near sold-out crowd has arrived early to see hard rock band Devour the Day. This band has a pretty loyal following in Las Vegas so it is easy to see why the crowd is there. They play a brief twenty-five minute set but it was filled with an intensity that kicked off the show well. Pop Evil is next, they have played various times over the past two years from support slots to headlining shows, but this performance really suits them. Hayley Cramer on drums announces the start of their set by basically flying at the drum kit. It is hard not to watch her during the performance but the rest of the band matches her intensity with singer Leigh Kakaty launching himself into the air at various points during the performance. The two songs of their set that gather the most crowd response are “Deal with the Devil” and “Be Legendary,” but the entire performance is one to watch. This performance shows why this band fits well in a support slot as well as headlining, but this was one of their best shows recently.

It is now time for the first of the co-headliners Sevendust. There is no arguing this band’s history and the crowd is anxious to see their performance tonight. Hailing from Atlanta Georgia this band has been a mainstay in the metal scene since their breakout self-titled album in 1997, but with an impressive twelve album catalog, including the newest release All I See is War, the crowd is eagerly anticipating what songs will be included tonight. They open strong with “Black,” “Ugly” and “Praise.” The crowd is already moving but up next is “Denial” and this is when the crowd begins to reach a whole new level of intensity. Lajon Witherspoon is one of the most unique frontmen in this genre and he is not disappointing tonight. The vocal is perfect. Witherspoon takes a moment before playing “Angel’s Son” to tell a touching story of meeting a ten-year-old boy who’s mom recently passed away. This really affected the crowd and gave an insight into who Witherspoon is as a person as well, and while the room was already filled with their fans, this moment definitely gained them some new fans.

The music of Sevendust is hard and fast and the members of the band do not disappoint. While not as animated as Pop Evil, Clint Lowery, Vince Hornsby, John Connolly and Morgan Rose play it perfectly, not missing a beat and the crowd is feeding off of their energy and the intensity of the music. The set ends with “Shine” and “Thank You” and while the crowd is satisfied with this performance they would love a few more songs as well.

There is excitement in the air and there is a quick set change then Skillet takes the stage. Visually, this band has a catching look with singer John Cooper and guitarist Korey Cooper. The music starts and the two of them are almost a blur of motion on the stage. It kicks off with “Feel Invincible,” “Not Gonna Die” and “You Ain’t Ready.” Lead guitarist Seth Morrison is matching their intensity and we begin to see glimpses of drummer Jen Ledger as she provides vocals to the songs.  

The high energy from the stage keeps going and on “You Ain’t Ready” it gets even more intense. John Cooper has smoke cannons strapped to his arms that he shoots off into the crowd. The visual of this is interesting and you begin to wonder how he maneuvers while wearing these. The thirteen-song set doesn’t slow down or let up at all. The three of them are still in constant motion. They play “Legendary,” “Back From the Dead,” “Save Me” and “Hero” before closing out with “Monster.” The crowd is moshing and singing along young and old. They follow this up with a single song encore of “The Resistance.” Visually the set has been impressive with smoke and giant video screens but it is the energy this band puts into the performance that really stands out.  

This co-headlining tour delivers what the fans want. Each band brings something a little different to the table and each band leaves the viewer impressed in a different way. After this show, it is easy to see why these large lineup shows are gaining in popularity and why the fans love them and will continue to support them.

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About Abigail Buckler 43 Articles
A Las Vegas based photographer, I enjoy shooting a variety of things but my primary focus is Travel, Music, Nature and Wildlife. My goal through my projects including Music, Event and Animal photography is to capture the candid moments that tell the story. They are singular moment of time, my goal is to take the viewer back to that point and the memories. I discovered photography is my passion. This allows me to incorporate my long standing love of music and travel into this art form. For me live music and concerts are who I am, and concerts and travel often went hand in hand. Now photography has brought these all together for me in a new and exciting way.

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