Nickelback, Brantley Gilbert and Josh Ross @ Darien Lake, Corfu, NY 8-16-23

Nickelback @ Darien Lake, Corfu, NY 8-16-23

Nothing like a mid week dose of music to keep the juices flowing until you reach the weekend. Darien Lake did them themselves good by booking a triple bill of music on a Wednesday that included one of the biggest rock bands post millennium in Nickelback. Accompanying them was one of the biggest country rock singers in Brantley Gilbert. Along with these two acts was up and comer Josh Ross.

First up was Josh Ross. Ross hails from Canada and has one studio album under his belt titled ‘Do What You Love.’ His 30 minute set had a mix of original material and a cover. The songs he played seemed to go over the audience very well. “Tall Boys” and “Ain’t Doing Jack” were highlights. I will say his voice sounded a lot like Johnny Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls. It was fumy that he did a cover of the Goo Goo Dolls song “Iris.”  This is his first major tour and I think the bright lights and big stage didn’t scare him at all. He was very comfortable and seems like he has a promising future ahead of him.

Second on the bill was Brantley Gilbert. From the time seeing him on television over the last several years, he is now taking his body to new heights. He is now totally jacked up and also now is covered in slew of tattoos. Gilbert has been garnering more and more of a fanbase as of late. As tend for most openers, fans tend to stay back in the parking lot and take their time getting in. I would say just about everyone was in their seats for his set. That shows you the attention he is getting.  Opening up with “Kick it in the Sticks,” Gilbert’s country rock show was solid from start to finish. What I like about Gilbert is he plugs in and plays a nice Gibson electric guitar. It was cool to hear a few covers mixed in including the Kenny Wayne Shepherd song “Blue on Black.” He is not trying to be a pretty boy by shaking his ass and playing an acoustic guitar you can’t hear. He self proclaimed being a red neck and hoped the audience would appreciate his red neck country rock show. I think they did in full force!

Closing out the show was Nickelback. The band released its 10th studio album ‘Get Rollin’ late last year. It’s been over 10 years since I saw the band perform live so I was curious if the band can still connect with their fans live. They opened up the show with their first single of of ‘Get Rollin’ in “San Quentin.” It was an appropriate opener due to the ensuing fight that broke out in the front of the stage. Vocalist & guitarist Chad Kroger singled the perpetrators out and called for them to be removed. Then added they both should be sent to San Quentin. Some people can’t handle their alcohol I guess” stated Kroger. Nickelbacks shows are known for a furry of pyro. This wasn’t the case on this show. It was very tame on this aspect to their shows in the past that’s for sure. Both Kroger and lead guitarist Ryan Peake had a friendly competition of who can sing a verse to “Animals” louder. Kroger won but that wasn’t the end of Peake on vocals. He handled lead on “Worthy to Say” and did an admirable job. Kroger making jokes remarked, 27 years we been together and its amazing that we are still money driven. One of the coolest moments was that Kroger noticed a fan in the front who wanted to propose to his girlfriend. He gave the guy the mic and then the guy got down on one knee and did propose. She accepted and then Kroger said, this song would be appropriate to go into as they did “Figured You Out.” Radio Station WBUF had a contest to sing “Rockstar” with the band. Contest winner Emily Rodriguez won and did a commendable job. What’s a rock show now without a t-shirt cannon? That was included too.  For the encores, Kroger sang “Gotta Be Somebody” from behind the stage. Of course, when they ended with “Burn it to the Ground,” the pyro here was in full force.

It was interesting to have 2 country artists open up for Nickelback. I believed it really worked here. Variety is always the spice of life. I been attending shows at Darien Lake for over 35 years. This may have been the most packed that I seen a show there, ever! 22,000 jam packed fans that enjoyed a terrific rock show!




San Quentin

Savin’ Me

Far Away



Worthy to Say

Figured You Out


Copperhead Road (Steve Earle cover-sang with Brantley Gilbert and Josh Ross)

High Time



Those days

You Don’t Have to Remind Me




Gotta Be Somebody

Burn it to the Ground

We would like to thank Ron Perks form Livenation for the credentials to review the show.