Ahead of the release of their latest album – World On Fire – Slash featuring Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators took the Fox Theater in CT by storm with a performance that harkened back to the glory days of hard rock, albeit in a much more intimate setting than the stadiums and arenas of yesteryear.
With the exception of festivals that feature numerous hard rock acts, the days of elaborate stadium and arena shows are no longer commonplace within the genre. Those of us who grew up seeing our favorite artists in larger venues may long for days gone by, but there is something to be said for being up-close-and-personal with true rock stars.
After an energetic set by opening act, Charm City Devils, Slash and the boys came out with guns blazing as they launched into “You’re A Lie” (off of their stellar 2012 album, Apocalyptic Love), electrifying the capacity crowd of 1400. Fists were pumping and heads were banging as the band segued into “Night Train.” In close quarters, you could feel the power of the music hitting you like a freight train.
Giving the crowd the chance to catch their collective breath, things slowed down briefly with “Halo,” a song that showcased Kennedy’s incredible range and musicality.
Slash and Kennedy complement each other as well as any other singer and guitarist in hard rock. If the duo had gotten together two decades ago, they may very well have been the next Aerosmith, a trajectory that GNR was on before abruptly breaking up early on in their career.
His Guns ‘N Roses days might be behind him, but make no mistake, Slash has put together a hard rock ensemble that is a force to be reckoned with.
Many GNR fans hope for a reunion of the original band, but those who simply long to hear the band’s music performed live, still have that opportunity with Slash, Kennedy & The Conspirators. This band performs GNR songs as well as the classic lineup, and while his vocal style is different than Axl Rose’s, Kennedy is in a league of his own when it comes to singing live.
In addition to “Night Train,” the set also featured a number of other GNR classics. The powerful rhythm section hit you like a kick in the teeth during “You Could Be Mine,” and the frenzied crowd erupted during “Rocket Queen” and “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” Proving that this band is both immensely talented and selfless, Kennedy grabbed his ax and yielded the spotlight to Todd Kerns (bassist), who sang lead on “Out Ta Get Me” and Slash’s “Doctor Alibi.”
The set, which lasted nearly two hours, seamlessly blended GNR songs with songs from World On Fire, Apocalyptic Love, Velvet Revolver and Slash’s eponymous solo album, including the two songs that Slash first recorded with Kennedy, “Back From Cali” and “Starlight.” These songs, along with “Not For Me,” allowed Kennedy to shine as he showcased his superior range and emotionally moving delivery.
Of course, Kennedy is also at the top of his game when it comes to high-energy, melodic rockers like “Anastasia,” which featured Slash’s incredible playing on the double-neck guitar, and “World On Fire,” the title track off of the band’s upcoming album, which has no shortage of new material. Since the album hadn’t been released at the time of this performance, only three new songs were played (including the title track).
If the new songs are any indication of what’s to come, this album promises to be a huge hit with the fans. Slash absolutely killed it on “Stone Blind” with a shredding solo, and Kennedy’s favorite track on the album, “30 Years To Life,” sounds like an instant classic.
The distinct sound and style that Slash and Kennedy each bring to the table works so well together, that it leaves you wondering what took them so long to find each other.
From the first note of “You’re A Lie” to the last note of Velvet Revolver’s “Slither,” Slash, Kennedy & The Conspirators delivered an arena-worthy show for the ages.
Ending on the ultimate high note, the band brought down the house with their rendition of GNR’s “Paradise City,” complete with a confetti blizzard that went deep into the exhilarated crowd, who undoubtedly were left wanting more.
Slash featuring Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators is a must-see show for any hard rock music fan who spent their youth going to arena shows. For the generation of fans that were born too late, this is the chance to go back in time and see what you missed out on!