Gallery By Tess
Gallery By Tess
Swanston Street Melbourne, outside Max Watts House Of Music as early comers and VIP’s queue for the return of our favourite adopted sons it is vastly evident that Melbourne holds a unique fondness for Fozzy and the brilliant line up, one and all. Half a block north, right there in Bourke Street, the noise of a vehicle crashing and screams of terror ring out as a vehicle bursts into flames. A male exits the burning vehicle and in all too familiar cowardly act of terror on an unwitting public, one is left deceased and two injured before the rants of madness, and screams of horror are silenced by a single shot from one of the brave members of the Victoria Police. Hero Police and members of the public, one armed only with a shopping trolley, stepped right up into harm’s way in an attempt to stop the madness and without a shadow of a doubt, prevented further loss of life with their actions. With a blade wielded aloft, stabbing repeatedly in an attempt to create as much harm as possible and no possibility of peaceful resolution, Police protected themselves and ultimately the public with one decisive action. With thoughts of an exciting concert blurred by unfolding horror and smoke still rising into the air, sirens, emergency responders, helicopters hovering above and a scene of inherent madness secured, we learn that people are lost at the hands of cowardly terror attack yet again. But we, along with the lads from Fozzy are left to think of the families left behind and offer somber reflection, but we will not be swayed from our resolve. A little delayed to ensure safety and efficiency, all fans and our beloved band is unswayed by the terrible events. Our VIP’s are ushered in by a beckoning Chris Jericho on the stage and comforted by the fact that no hatred driven attacks of cowardly madness are going to stop us in our tracks. Fozzy pump out Judas and all words of reflection and encouragement from Chris provide a fitting feeling of special comradery between the select few and the band returning after a five-year absence from Aussie stages. A meeting with the talented band members confirms that these genuine and magnificent people with be providing their very best for Chris Jericho’s Birthday Bash. There was no doubt that we would be receiving their finest all along, but I take some comfort in deciding that the events outside, provided an additional resolve and a special performance was in store as a sign of defiance that these hate fuelled lunatics will never, ever stop us in our track and tonight our bond is one of brilliant music.
Peeking outside at a long line of eager early comers confirms that terrorists can go fuck themselves….we will not be stopped. We are here for Fozzy and undaunted by the horror, Fozzy is here for us…lets party hearty and celebrate life.
With tremendous performances from both Torrential Thrill and the fantastic Dangerous Curves warming both the crowd and the room, ready for Fozzy, a huge cheer greets their return after five long years.
A recent string of shows, touring and fantastic floating party ships have Fozzy firing on all cylinders. Slapping us silly with the title track from their most recent and thoroughly brilliant album, the crowd is assured an awesome night.
The new songs from Judas along with back-catalog fan favourites ring out in celebration of this phenomenally magnificent band and the mid-set crowd interaction prove that Melbourne is thrilled to see the return of Fozzy and the band are equally happy to be back. After all, our fair city is the only place that always offers a hearty “Fozzy, Fozzy, Fozzy…Oi, Oi, Oi” and tonight some “…Happy Birthday dear Chris…” to top off the sense of family.
Every track a wild celebration, offerings of birthday Tim Tams and Kiss hats, penis cakes and even a glimpse of the One Man Army’s ample pecs in celebration, all led to a night of brilliant music and united celebration. Each band member was more awesome and animated than I have ever seen before and their polished performance was driven in equal measure by raw and magnificent skill, the pinnacle of brilliance from practiced performance and a special bond of defiance to earlier events outside in the world. But here in our world under one united roof, we celebrate all that’s Fozzy in Aussie and enjoy this magnificent group at the peak of their brilliant careers. But that apex is only an illusion as the bands’ brilliant show reveals that they are on a journey which will offer more magnificence to come. Their live show tonight demonstrates how a truly brilliant album like Judas can propel an already great band into unprecedented celebration and launch them to new heights of creative brilliance. All spent from a sensational show, we are left to ponder what possibly can come next from a band who are truly poised ready to launch into the glory years. One by one, people of the world are becoming acutely aware of how truly sensational Fozzy really are and for now we are blessed to enjoy their presence in such intimate and close quarters. Who else could turn ABBA’s SOS into a hard rock favourite?
Tonight Fozzy remind us of why we love their music so much as were are drawn into the magic, distracted from the realities of the modern world and given a refuge of oneness in a musical celebration. As we emerge back into that world, our hearts are filled with fresh determination at the hands of the great Fozzy, and their music a metal and hard rock path for our angst and outrage at those who would seek to keep us from Fozzy. Thank you Chris, Rich, Randy, Frank, and Billy. For so many reasons, this was such a special night and indicative of who you are, what you stand united with us for and precisely what you mean to us assembled, one and all.
Fozzy is still yet to appear at Sydney tonight, then Adelaide and Brisbane. You can still get your tickets here
VIP packages are available from the FOZZY website here
Review Contributed by Casper
It had been a little over 4 years since I’d last seen Skid Row perform (in Melbourne with their second singer Johnny Solinger) and coincidentally it was almost exactly a year to the day since I’d seen Skid Row’s original vocalist Sebastian Bach play an Adelaide solo gig at this exact same Adelaide venue, The Gov. This gave me lots to compare this current incarnation of Skid Row to.
Now fronted by ex-Dragonforce singer ZP Theart, this was the first time the band had played in Adelaide since the band’s tour in support of their debut album way back in 1990. I was there at that first Adelaide gig at Thebarton Theatre, and this time I was really looking forward to seeing the band up close in the more intimate setting of The Gov’s main room.
Opening the show was local 2-piece Fyre Byrd. Comprised of singer/guitarist Josh, and Drummer Daniella, there were a few raised eyebrows when the 2 young band members took their positions. They didn’t quite look like the expected support act for a Skid Row gig; however, the crowd soon got behind them when they realised their sound was much bigger than what was expected. Fyre Byrd had a sound that was more retro-inspired than the music of Skid Row, yet they had a more modern sound than the other bands tonight (yes, that is a little confusing). Their huge sound and energy on stage, particularly from Daniella who played the drums like a monster, kept the crowd interested for the duration of their set and kicked off the night nicely.
Soon after, second support Matterhorn hit the stage. With a growing following in the Adelaide rock scene, they attracted a healthy crowd down to the front of the stage and they looked more the part of a band suitable for supporting Skid Row.
Originally a rock and metal tribute act, Matterhorn, now armed with an album full of their own material (Crimes of Man) were here to play a set full of their own original tunes. The band’s tight set full of traditional hard rock songs complete with powerful vocals delivered by front-woman Amanda Ozolins, ensured the crowd was entertained and pumped up for the headliners.
When Skid Row hit the stage, it was to the familiar sound of their usual opener Slave to the Grind, the title track from their monster #1 second album. Right from these opening chords, the crowd was in full voice singing along to all of the Skid Row classics that made up the majority of the set.
From here, the next five of the following six songs were from the band’s huge debut self-titled album, including Piece of Me, Big Guns, and the hit ballad 18 and Life. The three original members, guitarists Dave Sabo and Scotti Hill & bassist Rachel Bolan were all in fine form, looking more or less exactly as they did back in their hey-day, and with the same energetic moves, they’ve always had onstage. Drummer Rob Hammersmith, having been in the band for a few years now, fits right into the mix and played the songs like he’s been in the band from the start, never missing a beat.
The biggest issue the band has had to deal with over the last few years is finding a front-man that the fans will accept as a replacement for Sebastian Bach. Let’s face it, Sebastian was a larger than life character that really can’t be replaced. Current singer ZP is the band’s fourth singer and even though Sebastian hasn’t fronted Skid Row for over 20 years, this is who every Skid Row singer is bound to be compared to. I had no idea what to expect from ZP as I wasn’t a Dragonforce fan and I had no real idea how he would fit in with this band. Coming to the gig with an open mind and no real expectations, I was pleasantly surprised by the band’s latest choice of vocalist. It was obvious early in the set that ZP had the voice for the job as he nailed every song without an issue. Not only that, he seemed to gel well with the other guys and showed more personality than Johnny Solinger did when I saw the band last. He certainly seemed to win the crowd over with this combination of vocal ability and charisma.
The set went on with more songs from the first two albums as well as Medicine Jar from their third album Subhuman Race. This song was a highlight for me and went down really well with the crowd, despite that album being a commercial failure in a time of grunge rock dominance in the mid-nineties. The only other song performed that wasn’t from the first two albums was a cover of The Sex Pistols’ God Save the Queen, with bassist Rachel Bolan on lead vocals.
The set was closed with a few of the band’s biggest songs including their hit power ballad I Remember You and finally their sing-along anthem Youth Gone Wild, which really had the room screaming along at the top of their lungs.
When it was all over, despite the Skid Row faithful still dreaming of a reunion between the band and Sebastian Bach in the future, everyone would had to have enjoyed hearing these songs performed live again by the original writers, in a great intimate setting, reliving the early 90s all over again with a great fun old-school rock show on a Tuesday night. If you’re a fan of Skid Row and you didn’t get to this gig because it wasn’t the original line-up, you really didn’t do yourself any favours as the original spirit of the old-days was most definitely in the room at this gig.
Review Contributed by Kym Robey
Gallery by Samuel Phillips
Gallery By Samuel Phillips
,Gallery By Elizabeth Sharpe
Gallery By Outback Bob
The All-Girl L.A. Guns n’ Roses Tribute PARADISE KITTY are here in a few weeks and Casper had an amazing chat with drummer RACHAEL RINE (Ex Femme Fatal) – there is even a surprise guest who joined the interview as well. You can listen to it below.
Paradise Kitty is a band of five badass babes born and bred on Guns N’ Roses bombastic 1987 debut, Appetite for Destruction. With serious metal honed chops and raucous reverence for the Sunset Strip warriors that took Hollywood and the world by storm, they are a sexy, smoldering, dead serious tribute that’s out to get GN’R fans far and wide.
Comprised of veteran L.A. based drummer, Rachael Rine, bassist Nikki Stevens, lead guitarist Britt “Lightning” Denaro, rhythm axe Hisako Ozawa and frenetic front-chick, Jenna Syde, Paradise Kitty is poised to kick in your door, blow your roof off, and vandalize your authentic Axl, Slash, Duff, Izzy and Steven-loving hearts. Welcome to the new goddess infused jungle, boys and girls. Paradise Kitty is coming to your town and it will be effin’ crazy. – Lonn Friend
Touring Australia: September/October 2018
With special guests excluding Adelaide Poison’Us Australian Poison Tribute
Canberra / Sat 29 Sept – The Basement + Poison’Us & ’80s rock DJ’s
Sydney / Sun 30 Sept (pub hol eve) – The Factory Theatre + Poison’Us, Dave Eastgate and Boner Contention & ’80s rock DJ’s
Newcastle / Thu 4 Oct – The Small Ballroom + Poison’Us & ’80s rock DJ’s
Brisbane / Fri 5 Oct – Woolly Mammoth + Poison’Us & ’80s rock DJ’s
Tickets on sale: Friday 20 July at 9am local.
The last time Stryper were in Adelaide was, incredibly, more than a quarter of a century ago, in a time when hair-metal was still king and grunge was still truly alternative.
Despite this previous gig being so long ago, I remember it well, mostly because it was so different from any other hard rock gig I’d been to at that point. I may have been barely old enough to drink but I had been to enough gigs already to know that it was highly unusual to be lining up outside Thebarton Theatre in the early afternoon sun to get into a venue that didn’t have beer on the menu. I put this down to Stryper, as a ‘Christian-metal’ band, trying to model good Christian behavior and encouraging a sober early bedtime for everyone on a Sunday.
This time around, it was a very different experience and a more typical rock gig.
Aside from the later hour and the serving of adult refreshments at The Gov, Stryper now had ex-Firehouse bassist Perry Richardson in the band and sadly, lead guitarist Oz Fox was not with the band for this tour. Only days before the band were due to leave for Australia, Oz suffered a brain seizure on stage in Las Vegas and was deemed not well enough to travel. With Oz’s blessing, the band decided to continue with the tour as a three-piece.
By the time support act Sonic Divide opened the show, there was a healthy sized crowd already at the venue and this first set of the night was full of enough epic sounding melodic rock to keep everyone in good spirits. The 6 piece’s big sound and the fact that the band’s guitarist formerly played with Disciple (an Adelaide Christian band who opened for Stryper all those years ago at the aforementioned earlier gig) made Sonic Divide a suitable and popular support tonight.
Second support act Rosemont (formerly Love Cream) seemed a little misplaced with their light-hearted vibe and somewhat funky pop-rock sound but they played well enough to keep the feel-good atmosphere in the room until Stryper made their appearance.
The headliners’ set started with frontman Michael Sweet making a low-key entrance to the stage to welcome everybody to the gig and to talk about the Oz Fox situation. From here it became obvious that this would be an intimate performance rather than a big over-the-top rock show. This seemed to suit the crowd who had filled The Gov on this Sunday evening and there was a genuinely warm feeling in the room between the band and the punters who had come to worship at the altar of Stryper. The set kicked off with a couple of more recent Stryper songs, Yahweh from their 2015 album Fallen and The Valley from the new album God Damn Evil. From here on, the set was mostly made up of classic 80s Stryper hits and tracks from the new album. The crowd sang along in full voice to classics Calling on You and Free from the To Hell with the Devil album which came early in the set, and everyone then seemed to embrace the newer material just as much as the more familiar classics. The set took a more casual turn when Michael brought out the acoustic guitar for a quiet solo rendition of Lady from the early 90s album Against the Law. From here on though, it was full steam ahead as the set was closed with rocking crowd-pleasers including Always There For You, Soldiers Under Command and To Hell with the Devil. There may have been an intimate feel to the show due to the banter coming from Michael Sweet between songs but the performance from the band was pure arena rock in execution and delivery. Relatively new bassist Perry Richardson still looks like the hair-metal rock star he was in Firehouse back in the early 90s, Robert Sweet still plays the drums like a true showman (all hair and sweat), and Michael’s playing and powerhouse vocals are still as great as they’ve always been.
As fantastic as this gig was, and as good as all three members of Stryper were tonight, the presence of Oz Fox was definitely missed. His lead guitar and backing vocals were the only things missing from the sound on the night and he would likely have been in the thoughts of most people in attendance. As the lights came on and the band left the stage I’m sure there were a lot of people praying for Oz to make a speedy recovery and hoping for another chance to see the full Stryper show in Australia in the not too distant future.
Review Contributed by Kym Robey
Gallery By Tracie Tee
BUTCH WALKER is a singer, songwriter, and producer whose skills run from radio-friendly pop to high-attitude hard rock. Walker launched his public career with the band SOUTHGANG, who inked a contract with Virgin Records. The hard rock band group released two albums before splitting up, and Walker eventually resurfaced with MARVELOUS 3. Walker gained a brief taste of major-label success during the ’80s and ’90s — particularly with MARVELOUS 3, whose single ‘’Freak of the Week” became a modern rock hit in 1999 — Walker traded his bandmates for a solo career. Meanwhile, he also established himself as an in-demand producer by working with high-profile artists like Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry, and P!nk.
The production work increased his reputation within the industry, and he quickly signed a solo contract with Arista. Left of Self Centered marked his solo debut in 2002; embodying the singer’s nonconformist attitude and playful rock & roll swagger. This was followed by 2004’s Letters which was released on Epic!
The production work kept rolling in and was at the helm for some for such big-name artists as Avril Lavigne (Under My Skin), P!nk (I’m Not Dead), and Tommy Lee (Tommyland: The Ride). The experience further boosted his industry profile and helped shape the sound of his next solo album, 2006’s The Rise and Fall of Butch Walker and the Let’s-Go-Out-Tonites. The album spun stories of drugged-out starlets, struggling wannabes, late-night adventures, and wild parties in L.A.; it was also Walker’s most fully realized record to date. Ever the multitasker, he returned to the production booth for several new projects — most notably Katy Perry‘s One of the Boys, which became a smash success during the summer of 2008 — before returning to his solo career that fall with Sycamore Meadows.
Watch MARVELOUS 3 ‘’Freak of the Week’’
I Liked It Better When You Had No Heart followed in 2010 and featured a new backup band, the Black Widows. The new group also played on Walker’s next album, Spade, which appeared 2011; that same year, he published an autobiography called Drinking with Strangers: Music Lessons from a Teenage Bullet Belt. Walker did some production work in the next two years — he showed up on Taylor Swift‘s 2012 album Red and helmed Fall Out Boy‘s 2013 comeback Save Rock and Roll — and teamed with producer Ryan Adams for his next solo album, 2015’s Afraid of Ghosts. His production credits don’t stop there he has steered the ship for Panic! At The Disco, Gavin DeGraw, Keith Urban, Weezer, Carley Rae Jepsen, The Wombats and many many more…
Watch BUTCH WALKER ‘’Bed On Fire’’
After producing the solo debut for Gaslight Anthem leader Brian Fallon Painkillers, Walker returned to the studio to cut another solo effort, the country-accented 2016 effort Stay Gold.
Walker is also an incredible songwriter and many of his songs have been hits for other artists, including Avril Lavigne, Sevendust, Injected, The Donnas, Hot Hot Heat, American Hi-Fi, Default, Gob, Midtown, Puffy AmiYumi, Pete Yorn, Fall Out Boy, Quietdrive, The All-American Rejects, SR-71, The Academy Is… and recently The Cab, Saosin, Never Shout Never, Weezer, Dashboard Confessional, and All Time Low.
This is one show not to be missed. A master singer and songwriter performing songs that span his illustrious career.
Butch Walker January 2019 Tour Dates:
Friday 25 January MELBOURNE Northcote Social Club
Saturday 26 January – BRISBANE Woolly Mammoth
Sunday 27 January – SYDNEY Oxford Art Factory
Tickets On Sale: Friday 24th August @ 9:00am AEST