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Old school rock with new school charm

Ticketholders for the current Dead Daises tour found themselves in Hard Rock Heaven when FM and The Graham Bonnet band were announced as appearing as support for the shows.

The Graham Bonnet Band was first up the for this evening's festivities. GB is best known for his tenure with Rainbow and of course 'Since You Been Gone' features in the set. Apart from his trademark shades, his stage attire looks as if your grandad has just stepped up onstage at Bandeoke... but it's doubtful that your grandad can belt out tunes like this. That voice is unmistakable, even though at times it lacks the power and stamina it once had. There are the occasional missed notes in part to a change in his ear monitors, but at nearly 75, and with a versatile career that stretches back to 1968, it's something that is pretty easy to overlook. The set is filled with classic rock songs including 'Night Games', 'Lost in Hollywood' and 'Desert Song' from his time with the Michael Schenker band.

Next up are AOR stalwarts FM. Led by the ever-enthusiastic, Steve Overland, the band pump out radio-friendly rock during their set. 'Synchronised' opens the set, there's even a track from their latest album 'Turn This Car Around.' Their best-known track 'I Belong To The Night' closes an all-too-short slot.

The main attraction is the supergroup The Dead Daisies. Doug Aldrich's open shirt, strutting, guitar seduction, and rock tropes are no surprise: he's a total performer. Frontman and bassist, Glen Hughes, dressed in sunglasses and a 70s-style suit, looks and sounds just like he did way back when and is equally impressive. With Hughes' charisma and Aldrich's monster lead guitar alongside founding member and powerhouse stickman, David Lowy and the ever-dependable Brian Tichy, despite the incongruence of sartorial style, this band just clicks. While some fans may prefer the early sound of the Daisies, with Marco Mendoza and John Corabi in the line-up, Hughes' addition to the band spins the band into a different universe.

The band released their new album, 'Radiance', earlier in the year and the set featured tracks such as 'Born To Fly' and 'Face Your Fear' alongside newer favorites like 'Rise Up' and 'Bustle and Flow'. The retro 70s vibe runs throughout the show with a blinding cover of CCR's 'Fortunate Son', Alex Harvey's 'Midnight Moses' and some Deep Purple cuts including 'Mistreated' and an astonishing live rendition of 'Burn' as part of the encore.

This was the classic rock fan's wet dream night out: nearly four hours of loud music, beer, peacocking about, and sing-a-longs. And having three awesome bands on the bill gave the show a festival vibe - despite the near-freezing temperatures outside. Hell, it's 24 degrees somewhere right?


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