Wednesday night at Irving Plaza in NYC was a homecoming of sorts for two bands, the first being a legend and the next,the future of hard rock and boy does the future look bright!!! I’ll start out with KILLCODE. Before I even start this review, see them…just see them…do this now so that you can say that you caught them when they were a local act because it’s not going to be that way for long. There was a vibe in the room that you could feel in the air. After a killer intro by Danny Stanton,The band kicks into the first song, “Answer.”
The frontman Tom Morrissey hits the stage dancing around and kicks the song off with a melodic growl. The first thing that stands out about KILLCODE is that they look like a gang, all black leather and black jeans. It’s really refreshing to see a band look like a real band. The lack of image today blows my mind. The two guitar players, D.C. Gonzales and Chas, play off each other well. D.C. has an Ace Frehley vibe and Chas is a bit more modern with a touch of Slash to his playing. The rhythm section of Erric Bonesmith and Rob Noxious absolutely drive songs like “Hands Up” and “6 am Again”. I’ll bring it back to Tom Morrissey…He’s a great frontman with a killer voice, modern with his own sound. He had the crowd in a chokehold and never let go. The topper of their set? An absolutely smoking version of TWISTED SISTER’S “You Can’t Stop Rock and Roll” with legendary guitarist Jay Jay French joining them on lead guitar. My only complaint is that they didn’t play longer. These guys are destined for big things. Check out all their links below,you’ll be glad you did.
Now onto SKID ROW. I’m going to be right up front with you,this is one of my favorite bands EVER. I was surprised when they moved on from vocalist Johnny Solinger but psyched when I heard that Tony Harnell was their new singer. I saw them at the Food Truck and Rock Carnival in New Jersey and was not happy, but in the spirit of fair play and wanting to see them headline their own show, I couldn’t wait to check them out on their 25th anniversary tour and I have to tell you,the difference in performances was night and day.
From the second they kicked into the opening song “Slave to the Grind” I knew I was in for something special. They went right into “Big Guns” and the packed house was singing along to every word. One thing that I liked is they hit on the Solinger-era songs like “Thick is the Skin” and “Ghost.” Tony Harnell was totally on point, hitting every note effortlessly and holding the crowd’s attention like the polished veteran that he is. Dave “The Snake” Sabo and Rachel Bolan took a few moments in between songs to speak to the crowd and you got the feeling that they were genuinely happy to be there. Bolan might be the most underrated bassist in hard rock, the man locks in with Rob Hammersmith like a machine propelling the songs forward while the guitar tandem of Scotti Hill and Sabo bring a ballsy,heavy and emotional feel to the leads (Scotti’s solo during “In a Darkened Room” made the hair on my arms stand up).
Every hit was delivered like it was 1989 all over again,with a youthful and fun vibe that was infectious throughout the crowd…….Youth gone wild? Indeed. Check HERE for all your SKID ROW info and for the future legends of rock, KILLCODE, all you need is right HERE.
LIVE WORDS: JIM CHINNICI
LIVE PHOTOS: MAX R. SEQUEIRA PHOTOGRAPHY