The Musical box is a Genesis re-creationist group from Montreal and they take their job seriously. This outing they are tackling the very heady Genesis prog rock concept record from 1975 The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway with vintage everything. Slides from the original tour as well as costumes and gear to match. In short they have recreated the show that you would have seen on the 1975-1976 tour (including Peter Gabriels weird little set up between the acts). I was too young to see Genesis with Peter Gabriel and I love this record so much that I could not resist. The band did not disappoint. All members are extremely talented and are playing note for note on most accounts. There was only one mini train wreck during the Colony Of Slippermen where the drummer lost his place. All in all between the sets, slides, outfits, amazing pacing and attention to detail I was blown away. The sound at Club Nokia is perfect and the club is run very well (maybe too well as the ushers were in the isles all night holding signs that said no filming). The reason I have dubbed this as re-creationist rather than calling it a cover band is that it is no different from seeing a touring theatre company doing a production of Wicked. If you are a fan of theatre and a fan of prog rock this show is way worth it. To add a cherry on top, after finishing The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway they launched into a fantastic re-creation of The Musical Box as well as Watcher Of The Sky’s (again complete with costume change for the singer etc) I think for those bands that are gone (KISS Grrrr…) this is a cool way to lovingly preserve the work that was initially put in. I feel lambs wool under my naked feet.
4.5 (out of 5)
Night Ranger had the somewhat tough task of warming up the Hollywood Bowl crowd which was already creeping towards capacity. They rocked it! I hate to sound like an old codger, but these guys rock harder in their 50′s then my generation did in our 30′s. With kick-ass renditions of such monsters as Don’t Tell Me you Love Me, Sister Christian, and the big time anthemic closer You Can Still Rock In America; people were pumped up and ready to rock.
Next up was Foreigner, who I had seen and reveiwed last year. (For a more in depth breakdown of their new live act, see the archives.) They hit the stage with a bang as expected, but something was missing… Oh yeah! The only original member, Mick Jones! So, hmmm… basically we really were seeing the world’s greatest Foreigner cover band. Nobody cared. Sad but true. The Foreigner catalog is bigger and better than most, and people were eating it up. Attention KISS: (Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons) Please license your name, choose the members to replace you, sanction and design the stage show, sit back, and collect checks. Better for you, better for us. And again, at that point the people who would go to the concert wouldn’t care. It would be a great circus rock show with players who can still sing and still play the bass lines. (Whoa…Sorry about the KISS rant!) I don’t the know the condition of Mick Jones, but I do know this is not the first show he has missed on this tour due to illness. We all wish him well. One other fun touch on the Foreigner set was L.S.’s own Bass player Jeff Pilson of Dokken and Dio fame joining Forigner for this performance. Double Vison, Hot Blooded, Feels Like The First Time, Cold As Ice, Dirty White Boy, Head Games, Urgent, Waiting For A Girl Like You, Jukebox Hero, and the fan favorite I Want To Know What Love Is… Okay?… get it?… good.
Journey. The secret is out: Arnel Pineda rules. Pineda the Filipino phenom handles the Steve Perry material with love and respect, but at the same time puts his own soul into it as well. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Arnel Pineda is a rock star. Journey was awesome as expected (they’ve had a few years to perfect their craft). The scene at the Bowl was nuts. We got the usual fans with their kids, the old school potheads singing and shaking in and out of reality, the huge influx of Filipino fans (of all ages), and of course it wouldn’t be a Bowl show without L.A.’s own PSD’s (plastic surgury disasters) with their pilates bodies dancing and singing with botox expresionless faces, augmented breasts, collagen puff lips and gleaming uber-white facade teeth in the front row. (Who convinced them that men like this look? I refuse to beleive that someone would do this for themselves. Apologies for my second rant.) The show was fantastic. Journey only played one new song off the new record: City Of Hope. It’s a great song, check it out! Stone In Love, When The Lights Go Down, Anyway You Want It, Open Arms, Who’s Crying Now, Separate Ways, Ask The Lonely, Faithfully, Wheel In the Sky, Be Good To Yourself, Don’t Stop Believing. Again: really?… Who has this many hits? Come on… Those days are over people. As if their show wasn’t great enough, Journey treated us to a fantastic firworks display to end the night. Extremely cool night, beutiful weather, full moon, tons of weirdos and normos and in-beetweenos. Good times great memories.
Yes, you can still rock in America!
5 (out of 5)