Shinedown Launches Milwaukee Fans To ‘Planet Zero’

Shinedown performing at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee, WI 4/29/2023. Photo © Ian Bardecki
Brent Smith (l) and Zach Myers (r) of Shinedown performing at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee, WI 4/29/2023. Photo © Ian Bardecki

Milwaukee, WI – On Saturday night, Shinedown’s Planet Zero World Tour stopped at Milwaukee’s Fiserv Forum. The band has been one of rocks most prolific acts for just over two decades, with six platinum and gold albums under their belt, and more than 10 million albums sold worldwide, they have become one of the highest-charting acts in music. And as hard as it might be to believe, Shinedown has officially outdone themselves in stage production. The stage setup for this show was a bit different than what your more familiar and traditional stage setups might be, as the band had a long runway extension that ran out to about the middle of the venue. Instead of a classic setup across one end of the forum, their setup was an extension into the crowd itself. It is almost in the round-like, and immersive for audience members everywhere in the arena, making them feel like they are a part of the show. It was pure genius and I hope they continue to use this kind of setup in the future, and that other bands take note. At the back of the stage, two massive, towering, LED screens lit up as the house lights dimmed, and “Welcome” from Planet Zero played across the venues PA. As the LED screens parted like the Red Sea, all four band members emerged and walked side by side to the front of the stage and stopped. Basking in the audience’s applause and then acknowledging their audience for the evening. Singer Brent Smith pounded his heart with his fist to each side of the venue and to the center of the crowd, as Barry Kerch, Zach Myers, and Eric Bass all got to their instruments, and with a thunderous explosion, the night was underway as “Diamond Eyes (Boom-Lay Boom-Lay Boom)” got the crowd going absolutely wild like a lit match to a can of kerosene.

As they banged through their opening song, Zach Myers and Eric Bass were all over the extended “in the round” stage, as was Brent Smith, jumping up and down and getting as riled up as their audience was. This band feeds off that energy and then gives it right back tenfold. I’d put up good money that the intensity, energy, and cohesiveness of the entire band are unmatched by anyone in the business. Not missing a beat, the band then ripped straight into their newest single, “Dead Don’t Die” off their latest effort Planet Zero, doubling down on the kick-ass start to their 20-song, 2-hour evening.

Taking their foot off the gas for a little bit to allow their audience to catch a breath, the band then went with a softer tone with “I’ll Follow You” and then picked the pace back up again with “Bully”. The ever-relentless power in their music is worth the price of admission alone. The bands’ resume is extensive, and it’s only backed up by their live performances. They could have played all night and nobody would have left the arena. Brent Smith’s vocals can be delicate as well as aggressive, captivating the audience night in and night out. He has not only grown as a front man over the past 20-plus years but also as a vocalist. And any conversation that doesn’t involve mentioning him as one of the all-time greats, as far as I’m concerned, is invalid. A sample of this is on their newer single off of Planet Zero, “A Symptom of Being Human”. That song was bookended between hard rocking tracks “Enemies”, which has become a staple of the band’s set, with Smith urging—then demanding—everyone jump for the heavy intro, and “Sound of Madness”, with Smith having the audience raise their fists in the air, ready to punch, and the entire time telling them, “Hold…Hold…Hold…” then the ever-familiar intro played upon Zach Myers guitar tears through the amplifiers, Smith then yells, “GO!” And suddenly there are 18,000 plus punching the air in rhythm to the beat of the song, it is something that truly must be seen and felt in person.

The band also took a short acoustic set break, with Zach Myers and Eric Bass both wielding acoustic guitars and having the entire venue sign along with their cover of “Don’t Look Back in Anger” by Oasis. Something that Smith & Myers, the side gig of both singer Brent Smith and guitarist Zach Myers, have also covered on their own. That was then backed up by “Daylight”, Lynyrd Skynyrds “Simple Man” and “Get Up”, a song dedicated to those who are either affected by or suffering from depression. Brent Smith went on to talk about how Shinedown has partnered with AFSP, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. “Partnering with the American Foundation For Suicide Prevention means a great deal to Barry, Zach, Eric and myself. Our appreciation for this incredible organization has grown year after year as we have witnessed the life-saving work that AFSP does and the resources it offers to address this urgent public health crisis that has far-reaching impacts on families and communities. Please remember – the world is a much better place with you in it. We are looking forward to donating $1 from every ticket sold during our upcoming tour to AFSP to help support this very important cause.”

The band then wrapped up their night with “Monsters” from their album Attention Attention and “Cut the Cord”. As Brent Smith and company left the stage, he stated to the crowd, “Just remember, it’s never goodbye, it’s just ’til next time.”

Diamond Eyes
Dead Don’t Die
I’ll Follow You
If You Only Knew
State of My Head
A Symptom of Being Human
Sound of Madness
Planet Zero
Second Chance
Don’t Look Back in Anger (Oasis cover: Zach Myers and Eric Bass acoustic)
Daylight (acoustic)
Get Up (acoustic)
Simple Man (acoustic)
Cut the Cord

Shinedown Online
Website | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter

Show Date:  4/29/2023

Previous articleTaylor Swift Solidifies ‘Entertainer of an Era’ With A Namesake Tour
Next articleMinistry Plays Philly – How Concerned Are You?
Ian Bardecki
Born in Scotland, raised in the United States, based in Chicago. Ian Bardecki is a professional photographer, avid motorcyclist, reader, IT geek, gaming and comic book nerd, who was bathed in music at a young age by his mother who constantly played classical piano in their home. While she also introduced him to the Beatles and Elvis, his father forced on him Hank Williams and Johnny Cash, the local paper boy had him listening to Alice Cooper, his uncle then turned him onto KISS and his first 8 track tape, while his friends turned him onto punk music. Today, his music library ranges from Amadeus Mozart to ZZ Ward and everything in between. Hesitantly agreeing to fill in one night to photograph a concert at a local venue in San Francisco for a friend, was where the accidental love and passion for concert photography was born and hasn’t stopped growing since. As a freelance photographer, Ian has had the honor of working with various artists like, John 5, Sick Puppies, Scott Stapp, Drowning Pool, Anti-Flag and Art of Dying, just to name a few. Ian can be found on Instagram and Facebook under Center Stage Pictures.