Bad Company + Joe Perry Project @ The LG Arena, 1st April 2010


For Bad Company’s reunion tour they have enlisted the help of Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry and his side project as their support act.  A well considered move, in my opinion, and certainly encourages me to make the effort to get to the LG Arena early.


The Joe Perry Project start with Let the Music Do the Talking taken from their debut album, however, their new vocalist’s style is too metal for the blues based rock underneath and detracts from Perry’s playing.  Luckily, this is quickly followed by Rufus Thomas’ Walkin’ the Dog, which appears on Aerosmith’s first album, and Perry takes lead vocals which are far more suited to the music.


After an unusual, almost reggae, version of Aerosmith’s Dream On and Fleetwood Mac’s  Somebody’s Going To Get Their Head Kicked In, The Project play an instrumental track, Wooden Ships, which was fantastic and demonstrated Perry at his finest, looking as cool as ever whilst leaning back as his personal wind machine does the business.  They end the brief set with Walk This Way and, yet again, the vocalist destroys a legendary track, which is redeemed slightly by Perry’s brilliant guitar solo at the end of the song.


After a short interlude, Bad Company hit the stage with their driving track, Can’t Get Enough of Your Love and, instantly, you are hit by the power of Paul Rodgers’ vocals.  A number of the audience rise to their feet in appreciation and you know that you are in for an evening of good, honest 70’s rock.  After blasting through Rock Steady, Rodgers’ takes to the piano for Running with the Pack followed by an over extended Burnin’ Sky which caused my mind to wander halfway through and willing the next song to start.  After Young Blood, Rodgers and guitarist Mick Ralphs joined together for the beautifully emotional Seagull which demonstrated a tender side to Rodgers’ vocal style and had the audience transfixed.  Rock ’n’ Roll Fantasy, Electricland and Simple Man all illustrated what a tight musical unit Bad Company are, and what a rock legend Rodgers’ is with is microphone stand twirling and connection with the crowd at all aspects of the arena.


The introduction to Feel Like Makin’ Love, heightens the atmosphere even further and emphasises the band’s ability to write such great rock anthems with truly rousing and memorably choruses.  Throughout the concert, the backdrop and lighting has been minimal keeping the audience’s attention focused solely on the band; however, with Shooting Star the band using the back screen to show pictures of those musicians that have passed away ranging from Joplin, Hendrix and Moon to Company’s late bassist Boz Burrell, which adds a further depth to the song.


The set ends with Movin’ On and you know that the crowd are not happy to let Bad Company leave it there.  The band return for an encore of the track Bad Company and Ready For Love both of which have most of the audience up and dancing.  Considering their back catalogue, it was a brief set that didn’t last an hour and a half but then it did leave you wanting more rather than being ready to leave.  They certainly proved that, despite their age, Bad Company have got a lot more years in them yet.

Review — Toni Woodward
Photos — Andy Whitehouse

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