Fireworks

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The Winery Dogs http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/22/30/f9/The-Winery-Dogs-2013-Live-Review-Rocktopia-54-1389737956.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     January 14, 2014    
 
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The Winery Dogs - O2 Academy, London (UK) - 5th September 2013

Following the buzz created by this new super group, it was no surprise to find a crammed venue for their first live appearance in the UK. Eager to get on the road, bassist Billy Sheehan of Mr. Big, drummer Mike Portnoy formerly of Dream Theater and singer/guitarist Richie Kotzen formerly of Mr. Big and Poison, and with an extensive solo career, didn't even wait for their self-titled debut album to hit the shelves. Nonetheless, it seemed quite obvious the response they would encounter would not fall far from impressive. And such was the case.

Kicking off with the strongest album track, the opening 'Elevate', the extremely talented trio proceeded to perform every one of the 12 songs of their release, including the mesmerising 'You Saved Me' and a third personal favourite, 'Desire', which they left for the last encore. Playing like a real band and not just another passing project, it was gratifying to see how Kotzen enjoyed sharing the spotlight with his two band mates. His extraordinary voice was on a par with his guitar playing, and the trademark bass sound of Sheehan together with the powerful drumming of Portnoy resulted in a tight and convincing sound.

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Filling gaps to make their stage time worthy of a headline act, the set inevitably (given their highly acclaimed musicianship) included a bass solo and a drum solo, but also Kotzen's 'You Can't Save Me', Poison's 'Stand' (which he wrote and played solo with his acoustic guitar) and Mr. Big's 'Shine', which saw the crowd singing along. The surprise of the set came with 'Fooled Around And Fell In Love', an Elvin Bishop cover which I can only presume was Kotzen's choice.

A night to remember with three music illuminati dissipating any possible doubts as to the intentions of the band and proved the strength of the album is not only evident on record but instantly visible in a live environment.

Mónica Castedo-López

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