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....................... ...........11/2001 Arco Arena Sacramento
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 Staind
 
...I think I've seen Staind perform about a half a dozen times and every time they seem to mature more into a rock band heading for stardom. Maybe its because they have worked so hard to accomplish a goal of being their selves and not copying other bands.
.....With head shaven and a tattooed forearm pressed tightly against his sagging chest, Staind singer Aaron Lewis walks the stage with the labored deliberation of a monk heading toward the gallows. He may be the figurehead of the biggest rock band in America at the moment, but Lewis is in no mood to celebrate. He plays a martyr in droopy drawers, a confessional balladeer fronting a Korn-era metal band. As part of the five-band Family Values tour that played to a sold-out Arco Arena over the weekend, pain - once the antithesis of rock celebration - was a commodity. And the power ballad - once derided as the most transparent of songwriting cliches - was how it was conveyed. Lewis doesn't clamor for the audience's attention, or scream his anthemic melodies. Instead, he croons like a heartbroken coffeehouse balladeer. He is Bread's David Gates reincarnated with a pierced eyebrow and tattoos. No wonder the audience anticipated not the rockers from the quartet's two albums, but the Bread-worthy ballads. Lewis poured out his pain in big audience singalongs such as "It's Been Awhile" and "Outside." "Cause inside you're ugly, you're ugly like me," Lewis sang. The same ritual is replicated several times a day on an MTV video - the mournful balladeer joined by a lighter-waving audience in a cathartic public cleansing - and it has made Staind's "Break the Cycle" album a triple-platinum hit.
.....Staind is getting ready to release a DVD, which will feature music videos, an acoustic session, and backstage interviews with the band. The still-untitled collection is tentatively scheduled for a November 20 release. The DVD is scheduled to contain the videos for "Mudshovel" and "Fade," as well as the band's entire MTV Unplugged broadcast plus two additional songs that didn't make the show, "Pressure" and "Suffer." Earlier this year Staind's acoustic side drew attention, when Aaron Lewis' version of "Outside," with special guest Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst, appeared on the Family Values '99 album, and eventually topped Billboard's Modern Rock chart.

By Randy Cohen

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   Members of Staind :
 Aron Lewis (vocals), Mike Mushok (guitar), Johnny April (bass) and Jon Wyscoki (drums)





 
 
 
 

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