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Sully Erna Visits Avalon at The Egg in Albany – A Concert Review

Q103 / Nick Lee

Godsmack front man Sully Erna brought his solo tour in support of his project ‘Avalon’ to the Egg Sunday Night.   Avalon showcased the other side of Sully – a softer, gentler, and spiritual side of the singer.  His show at the Egg certainly didn’t disappoint the 800 plus in attendance. 

Q103 / Nick Lee

Sully Erna frontman of Godsmack, a loud angry hard rock band has another side of him with his project called Avalon. The album released in September are songs that have been in the making for over 7 years.  These are songs that don’t necessarily fit on any Godsmack album but find Erna experimenting with tribal percussion, string arrangements and harmonies.

By no means is Godsmack on hold its a total separate entity,  in fact Sully will leave his solo tour to join the members of Godsmack to perform in a few shows before returning to resume Avalon which ends in late June.

Sully explains the difference between the two.  “Godsmack is the crazy guy who does shots, Avalon is when I sit home at the piano with my daughter or watch movies on the couch”.

The Egg’s stage was dimly lit with candles as Sully and his eight piece band took the stage.  Starting with tribal beats and the opening track of the album ‘Avalon’,  Erna didn’t say a word as he moved from one instrument to another in keeping the event all about the music.

Q103 / Nick Lee

Sully was joined by his longtime friend and  “Female Musical Soul Mate”;  Lisa Guyer, an phenomenal singer with a wide range of harmonies .  She was an absolute treat to watch and listen to. The Avalon tour consists of a eight piece ensemble band.   Besides Lisa, there is guitarist Tim Theriault, who Sully says knows the riffs, and solo’s to every song ever made.  Erna tried to stump him by reading off titles which Tim immediately played.  Acoustic guitarist and bassist Chris Lester,  keyboardist and multi instrumentalist Chris Decato, classically trained cellist Irina Chirkova from Bulgaria and percussionists Naill Gregory from Ireland and in a band called Dead Can Dance, and David Stefanelli.

Q103 / Nick Lee

Highlights of the show consisted of ” My Light” a song about his daughter was very touching as home movies played on the screen behind the band.  Immediately followed by Sully on the piano for a solo including John Carpenters theme from Halloween then performing “Until Then” with cellist Irina Chirkova and “Eyes of a Child” with images of kids infected with HIV/AIDS and statements about the disease.

Before the encore began, Sully finally spoke to the audience thanking them for their kind response as he wanted to present Avalon as one piece.  He spoke how music has lost its way, and gotten away from us.  He wanted the audience to understand why he made Avalon why the music moves you in a certain way.  Sully said “This is the gift of music, take it home with you”.

For those fans who expected acoustic Godsmack songs got their gift at the end of the night as the first song of the encore was “Serenity” followed by Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain” and “Hey Jude” where Erna asked the audience to sing the chorus with him.

Set List:
Avalon
Sinner’s Prayer
Broken Road
The Departed
My Light
Sully Piano solo
Until Then
Dueling Percussionists
The Rise
Eyes Of A Child
7 Years

Encore:
Serenity
The Chain
Hey Jude

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