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Headbangers

Slash and Coheed and Cambria in Singapore

By A Headbanger, Do You Bang Head?
Wednesday, August 18, 2010 @ 4:20 PM


Ft Canning Park

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Reviewed by Tommy Trog.

The first band on hailed from Austraila, they were a last minute addition to the bill, I believe they were called 200 Above but I could be wrong. They sounded like Soundgarden in spots, one song was very similar to "Outshined" and I was waiting for the lyrics but it was not. The best part about the band was the singer, strong soulful voice. The whole band needs to move around a little more, they certainly were given enough space even though they were the 1st band on a 3 band bill.

Next up, Coheed and Cambria. I know they have a few records out and a bit of buzz about them back in my homeland but I am not familiar. I went to YouTube in the weeks leading up to this show to get an idea. They reminded me of early Rush; 70's Rush. On stage the most noticeable thing at first was the singer /guitarist's hair. He's like mop head, for the first 4 songs we never saw his face, it was covered by hair. It made for an interesting effect when he'd throw his head around. He and the other guitarist trade vocals in some songs, the mop head is the singer with a good voice, the other guy keeps throwing in these "death metal" like vocals. Both were pretty energetic. I don't know what's up with the bass player, his 2 band mates are rocking glad to be there and he's over there planted like a stone the whole night. They could've just put the bass parts on tape. He's unnecessary. Couldn't tell you what the names of their songs were but there were 2 in particular that caught my ear. One had a chorus that went something like, "Marry me, I'll save you from the misery…", and the other song was just a really bizzare, progressive arrangement. A few of their songs blurred together and it could've just been one long song except there were breaks to tell me that was not the case. Over all I liked them. I don't think I am sold on them. I don't think I will be hunting for their CD in the local stores but they certainly weren't bad. They are unique and they are obviously influenced by early Rush records and far be it from me to criticize that.

Slash stormed on stage playing my favorite song from his current release, the song "Ghost." This song is everything rock n roll is supposed to be. It has a great chunky riff, cool lyrics, an undeniable groove. "Ghost" was an excellent starting song. Next up was "Mean Bone" from the 2nd Snakepit album and then singer Myles Kennedy asked if we were ready to ride the night train? Crowd goes crazy singing along to almost every line, Slash is strutting around doing that "hop" that he does. It's rock n roll paradise people. "Dirty Lil' Thing" is the next song and so in the first 4 songs he has covered every aspect of his career - the new album, Snakepit, Guns N Roses and Velvet Revolver. I liked that.

Surprsingly he then showcases another Snakepit song, "Beggars & Hangers On." His band is fierce and this singer, Myles Kennedy has an exceptionally strong voice, the voice gets really put to the test in what's to come, "Civil War" & "Rocket Queen." Prior to "Civil War" he announces he can't whistle and would like us to the whistling intro over Slash's delicate smooth playing. Hey Myles..I don't know how to whistle either, it's ok. Unable to replicate this part of Axl Rose's style is the only short coming Myles had all night, the rest of the song he nails...

"MY HANDS ARE TIED! I DON'T NEED YOUR CIVIL WAR...IT FEEDS THE RICH WHILE IT BURIES THE POOR"

It was nice to hear people singing along to that one, I wasn't sure if it was well known, it was not one of Guns N Roses' "hit" songs. "Rocket Queen" continued the pace, bringing the energy level higher and when it came time to sing the end of the song, you know, where Axl's voice really goes crazy...Myles pulled that off too. A pair of Velvet Revolver songs came in the form of "Fall to Pieces" & "Sucker Train Blues." Before the song "Starlight" Myles took a moment to remember Ronnie James Dio which elicted a loud appreciative reaction from the crowd that I would estimate was between 6 & 7,000.

After this the show became a bit dull, they fired off the instrumental "Watch This" from the current album and then that led to a really long drawn out Slash guitar solo. It was quite bluesy and if you enjoy a blues guitar solo, well Slash does it just as well as anyone else but for me it was like putting the brakes on and wanting to get out a blanket and just lay down. I think by the time it was over, I was gazing around looking for audience reaction, yeah, I was not alone. A lot of bored faces and people generally just talking amongst themselves or wandering around waiting for another song. This damn solo took the place of at least 2 songs. Yawn.

How do you recover from that? There's only 2 songs that will light a fire in everyone's ass after this and you better believe Slash is smart enough to know it. Without hesitation the solo seagues into "Sweet Child O'Mine." What an enduring song this is. 20 Years from now, people will still be jamming this song and loving it. Instant wake up. A beautiful song played beautifully and once again I am saying to myself "Axl who?" An Alter Bridge song is played next, this is the band that Myles fronts on a regular basis, this Slash tour is just taking a break from that for him. "Slither" finishes the set and a few people start heading to the door. It's late, almost time for the trains to be cut off which would leave a lot of people having to pay for taxi's home & perhaps that's the reason for a big surge towards the door, however Slash and band come back in minutes delivering "By The Sword" & the closer "Paradise City."

Other than an instrumental followed by a super long guitar solo this was pretty much a superb rock performance. Slash looked great too, his biceps are toned, looks healthy, wearing his trademark top hat, black leather pants and chains all around his belt, his hair still long and shaggy, he defines rock n roll, one of the last living breathing specimens of hard rock. Unlike other hard rock acts that enjoyed huge success in the 80's (Def Leppard, Bon Jovi) Slash has not toned down. It's not mellow, he doesn't border on pop, he doesn't try to experiment with country music, he just delivers gritty, heavy duty rock. Check out Slash on tour if you can.

The complete setlist went like this:

    1. Ghost (current album)
    2. Mean Bone (2nd Snakepit album)
    3. Night Train (GnR)
    4. Dirty Lil' Thing (Velvet Revolver)
    5. Beggars and Hangers On (1st Snakepit album)
    6. Back to Cali (current album)
    7. Civil War (GnR)
    8. Rocket Queen (GnR)
    9. Fall to Pieces (VR)
    10. Sucker Train Blues (VR)
    11. Nothing to Say (current album)
    12. Starlight (current album)
    13. Watch This (current album)
    14. LONG ASS GUITAR SOLO
    15. Sweet Child O'Mine (GnR)
    16. an Alter Bridge tune I am not familiar with
    17. Slither
    18. By the Sword
    19. Paradise City
good night~



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