On a cold October evening in Manchester 1000s of fans made their way to the centre of Manchester to see one of the biggest rock bands to have come out of Canada, Nickleback, on their European Tour. Nickleback have been together with only a drummer change for over 20 years. Lead singer Chad Kroeger, guitarist Ryan Peake and bassist Mike Kroeger were joined by drummer Daniel Adair in 2005 and you can tell right away that this polished outfit have had a lot of time together.
Opening with Edge of a Revolution and quickly moving into a blistering version of Animals they caught the crowd and invited them into their world of a band that obviously love performing together, a world in which they kept the fans for the rest of the show.
The show consisted of high energy crowd pleasers from Nickleback’s back catalogue, each song played with proficiency and evident joy by the band. I had been told that Nickleback put on a good show, I had watched videos online but I wasn’t prepared for just how good this band are live. Their tight harmonies and well-practiced playing kept the crowd rapt.
Crowd singalong highlights of the evening were heartfelt rendition of Photograph, How You Remind Me and Hero where Chad Kroeger’s voice had a poignant gravelly tone to it and harmonies from Peake, Mike Kroeger and Adair all added to the atmosphere that added to the live version vs the single.
The excellent show was intensified by a well thought out and executed stage show, 3 big screens showing the action and videos to match the songs and a lighting setup that matched the musical performance in intensity and wow factor.
As the show came to an end the crowd were left calling for more and Nickleback duly obliged with Peake singing an excellent cover of The Foofighter’s Everlong. They followed with Burn it to the ground which was a perfect end to the gig.
This Nickleback show was exactly what you would expect form such a massive, veteran band.
4 guys on stage, blasting out music and having an absolute ball while doing it.
Well done Nickleback, you have won over a jaded music photographer!
If you can get tickets, even if you barely know Nickleback’s back catalogue, I suggest you go see this tour, you won’t be disappointed.
Words and photos by Ben Gwynne