Review: Nickelback at Sheffield Arena


It’s easy to say they attract a lot of people to their concerts, and whilst it wasn’t completely packed in the seating area around the stage, the dense crowd that jumped and waved to the beat of the music in the standing area at the centre of the arena said everything. That was one reason out of many that the concert did not end up disappointing – after all, you can get quite a kick out of seeing other people enjoying themselves. And besides, when you really don’t like something, it’s pretty hard to fake being entertained as much as the crowd was at the concert.

Nickelback themselves ended up saving their most well-known songs for later on. After introducing themselves through their heavy, anti-authoritarian hit ‘Edge of a Revolution’ off their most recent album No Fixed Address, the audience didn’t receive signature songs like ‘Rockstar’ (which was perfectly played out in the form of a karaoke, with two members of the audience being picked out to sing along with everyone else joining in) and ‘How You Remind Me’ near the beginning. The latter even ended up being the last song before the encore, which showed that they thought it was a brilliant idea to save the best ones until (well, almost) last.

What’s also good about Nickelback is that, albeit being a little ill-defined with the music that they play, there’s always a comfortable mix of genre types that you can find within it. Their lighter, more dramatic songs such as ‘Far Away’ and ‘Lullaby’ are almost too easy to like and connect with on an emotional level, whilst their heavier pieces such as ‘Burn it to the Ground’ and ‘Side of a Bullet’ have a heart-pounding beat for people to enjoy air-playing instruments such as the guitar and drum to them. It’s certainly hard for me to admit that it’s not actually better this way for them to be so volatile in their music because all the different kind of songs that I’ve heard from them fit so well in terms of how they look and want to get across. It was the same about their concert too; their transition from what can be considered their more hardcore songs such as the aforementioned ‘Edge of a Revolution’ to songs barely seen as rock or post-grunge, like ‘Too Bad’, ‘Far Away’, ‘Photograph’ and ‘Someday’, is terrific and just feels natural. I don’t think that they were built for one kind of look or style, so their dramatic and seize-the-day rhetoric that is imbued within their music gives them as much of an edge as their harder and heavier rock songs do.

So, whilst their breaks between songs with them messing around, swearing and pretending to be drunk or high could be debatable (in all honesty, for me, it made the concert feel even more entertaining and fitted their look as a band), or how their songs can feel derivative and unimaginative, you must admit, they are fantastic live, Chad has amazing vocals and they most certainly know how to get a crowd going.,d.ZGg


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