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WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Written By: Gary Crouthamel
*Click images below to view larger versions.
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Red Sun Rising
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Wolfmother
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Collective Soul
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Sixx AM
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
3 Doors Down
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Shinedown
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Disturbed
WMMR-B-Q 2016 BB&T Center
Disturbed
BB&T Center (Formerly Susquehanna Bank Center)
Camden, NJ • Saturday, May 21
 
      Well, it was back to Camden, NJ, and the newly-named BB&T Center, my favorite place to shoot and see a concert, for the WMMR-B-Q show and the venue’s kick-off concert for the season. Just wish we would have had some decent weather to enjoy it a little better as me and my photog friend pulled into the parking lot to a steady rain shower that had only a few tail-gaters hanging out before moving in for the all-day event. As we got inside it was time for the opening band, Red Sun Rising, who took the stage at 1:55 pm. I’d say thanks to Mother Nature’s rain, a lot more people were already inside the venue than if it were sunny and toasty out in the parking lots. I’ve heard of the band but never seen them and as most WMMRBQ shows go, with the limited time for sets, most bands pretty much play an all hits set. They played a 7-song set to get the concert started. If anyone else has heard of them or like them, well, good news, they will be playing our OC Bikefest on Saturday, Sept. 17th.
After a quick set change, it was Wolfmother up next at 3:00 pm. With a back drop resembling the cover of their latest album, “Victorious”, these three guys ran through an 8-song set opening with “Victorious” and playing the rest off their other three albums, ending with “Joker & the Thief” that I have actually heard before; quite a good song. For the next band you will have to scroll down to my previous review for Collective Soul. They took the stage at 4:10 pm and pretty much from seeing them at our Springfest two weeks ago, only thing different was a shorter setlist, less talking to the crowd, and a lot more room for the singer to run around this massive stage, of which he took full advantage, running side to side while interacting with the crowd. Good news again for Collective Soul fans: they are starting a co/headlining tour with the Goo Goo Dolls on July 8th and will be closest to us in Philadelphia, in Virginia and even Solomons, Md. Check all dates at www.pollstar.com
With their set over, it was time for security to get everyone out of the GA pit and pavilion seats as the venue is general admission up to Collective Soul’s set. Anyone with a reserve ticket or lawn seat had to return to their assigned section. I felt bad for the people in the pit for the first half who had to go out there in that still coming down cold, damp rain. After the switch and at 5:30 pm, it was Nikki Sixx, the bass player of Motley Crue fame’s band Sixx: A.M. With their back drop sporting the Sixx: A.M., out on tour and supporting their just released album “Prayers for the Damned” in April,. They opened with “This Is Gonna Hurt”, and ran through an 8-song set with Sixx and guitarist DJ Ashba, playing from the risers at the edge of the stage for the crowd to see up close; before closing with “Life Is Beautiful” from their first album. With another short set change, it was time for 3 Doors Down as they took the stage at 6:50 pm to a back drop that was resembling their latest album, “Us and the Night”, released in March. The band opened with “Still Alive’ from that album and played a 12-song set with hits covering all of their six albums. With singer Brad Arnold running all over the stage, most of the other band members stayed pretty much stationary before closing their set with the favorites “Kryptonite”, and “When I’m Gone”. If you’re a fan of 3DD and missed them at the Delaware State Fair two years ago, they also will be playing our Bikefest on Saturday, Sept. 17th, along with Red Sun Rising and Pop Evil.
As we made our way back out for the next band, Shinedown, I just happened to look out at the pavilion and lawn and noticed that both were still quite full despite the nasty weather conditions from Mother Nature. I would assume the waffling scents blowing throughout the pavilion might be a positive reason that they’re still hanging out, even though as the evening went on, I noticed that after every band there were a scattered few exiting the venue. I’m sure certain people were there for only certain bands and, as always, it’s a very low priced ticket for the bands that are on the bill. At 8:00 pm Shinedown took the stage and opened with “Asking For It” from their latest release “Threat to Survival.” They ran through a 12-song set with singer Brent Smith and guitarist Zach Myers, as like Sixx: A.M., singing and playing from the risers that were set up at the stage’s edge, and running all over when not on them, while drummer Barry Kerch was stuck atop his kit high up on his riser. I have seen these guys before and I have to say the highlight of their set is when they play Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man,” of which I’ve been told they always play live at their concerts. They closed their show with “Sound of Madness’, from their third album of the same name. Good news again, Shinedown will be touring through the summer and you can catch them on the “Carnival of Madness Tour” at the Merriweather Post Pavilion on Wednesday, August 10; also on that bill are Halestorm, Black Stone Cherry, and Whiskey Myers.
As the long day came to an end, it was finally time for closing band Disturbed to take the stage at 9:30 pm. As the headliner, they got to use their major stage production which had multi-tiered steps all along the stage, and huge ripped squares of cloths behind the stage at the start of the show. Not long into it, however, they dropped a backdrop to reveal an album cover of their latest release “Immortalized”. When the band came out and opened with “Ten Thousand Flats” from their third album of the same name, the crowd was awakened to the massive fire flames and smoke coming up from the stage at the risers’ edge which continued throughout their set. Felt real good to me and I’m sure most people in the pit and pavilion were happy to feel a little warmth after this wet and damp day. As the band rolled through their 12-song set, I’d say Disturbed’s highlight, and the crowd’s as well, was when they played Simon & Garfunkel’s “The Sound of Silence”, and a medley of Nine Inch Nail’s “Closer,”  U2’s “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”, the Who’s “Baba O’Riley”, and Rage Against The Machine’s “Killing in the Name.” They closed out the night with “Voices” and  “Down With the Sickness”. For the last time with good news, Disturbed is just about finishing a spring tour with Rob Zombie but will be out on tour this summer with Breaking Benjamin, Alter Bridge and Saint Asonia starting early July and running through August.
So there you have it. If you’ve missed any of these bands and the ones that are coming up on tour, you still have a chance to catch them. Yes, we have fantastic musicians right here in our back yard but trust me, there is nothing like a live major concert production and nowadays they are just amazing. Go out and treat yourself; it’s worth the road trip. Enjoy and stay tuned for my next road trip in June. I won’t hint but I think you will enjoy. Oh, and BTW, check www.pollstar.com, for all your concert info and cities; there are a ton of acts out all summer and only a tank of gas away. See you at a show!!!  
 
– Gary Crouthamel, concert photojournalist
 
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