Tuesday, September 30, 2003 @ 12:02 AM
Diana DeVille Reviews Odin Liv
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What year is it again?! Their hair might be shorter these days, but when Odin hit the stage of the Troubadour Friday night, Sept. 26, it might as well have been a flashback to 15 years ago, from the multi-colored flashing Odin logo on the backdrop to the leather lace-up pants bassist Aaron Samson sported. But, as they say, it’s all about the music, and the music and the live show did not disappoint.
When my friend SaintLisa and I walked in, some nu-metal band was on stage. We both looked at each other and thought, “How did this band get booked with Odin? That’s like night and day.” So we went back to the front bar, got a drink and waited it out. It wasn’t as packed as the first Odin “comeback” show back in February, so we decided to walk around and find a good viewing spot. I found myself right up at the stage, pressed in front of an amp, a place I haven’t been in years. Let the fun begin! Gonzo and Phil Sandoval from Armored Saint showed up in support as well as KNAC.COM’s DJ Will and Junkman.
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The show got off to a bit of a rocky start, with some misguided individual throwing a bottle onto the stage during the first song, hitting drummer Shawn Duncan. This was enough to get frontman Randy O riled up enough to exhort the audience to do some “ass-kicking” if they should see who did it. However, the guy was seen running away after throwing the bottle, so my opinion is that it was a leftover from the band before. Whatever. The show must go on! And it did, with the band jumping into the fray to rock the house down with a high energy, just plain FUN show reminiscent of all those nights spent on the Sunset Strip back in the ‘80s/early ‘90s at the height of the hair metal glory days.
Randy O proved to be in fine form, hitting all of the high notes, prowling the stage surveying his kingdom and headbanging at the altar of the Marshall stack. All the while he was in total command of the selective but enthusiastic audience, having them eating out of the palm of his hand for the audience participation phase of the show on “Don’t Take No For an Answer.”
Guitarist Jeff Duncan pulled out all the stops, alternately shredding and then pausing for lighter moments to display the intricate fretwork that led him into the leagues of the mighty Armored Saint. The latter part of the show definitely belonged to Duncan, as he dropped to his knees for a blistering solo in “Solar Eye,” blasted his way through “Little Gypsy,” saving the requisite guitar solo for the end right before “Judgment Day.”
In the meantime, Aaron Samson held up his side of the stage, providing the balance and counterpart to Duncan’s activity. The bass he played during the encore, a black one with an interesting box kind of shape was fun to watch as well. And Shawn Duncan didn’t miss a beat, keeping it going in spite of being conked on the head by a Corona bottle right out of the gate. For the encore, they knocked out “Shining Love” and “Push,” retreating only to return with a medley of The Doors’ “People are Strange” and Led Zeppelin’s “The Immigrant Song,” which was perfect for Randy’s voice.
All in all, it was a “let your hair down and have fun” kind of show -- the kind of show that leaves you feeling great once it’s over. Those who came were truly into the band, and it was terrific to see the audience singing along with Randy O to every word. Who knows what the future holds for Odin past October 19th, when they play the Viper Room, but it doesn’t really matter. As Jeff Duncan said, “We play every show as if it’s our last show, because it may very well be.” That said, if you missed the show, make sure to see them at the Viper Room, because…. it might well be their last show (or not). At any rate, you’ll come away with that feeling that you’ve seen a great rock show.
(Note: Jeff and Shawn Duncan's band DC4 will be playing the Viper Room on October 17, not Odin on the 19th -- dd)