Photos and Review by CRAIG HAMMONS
The Quireboys are back in America and it’s time to party.
There are times when a Rock N Roll show is the best prescription for whatever is bothering you. It was one of those nights and I knew I had just the right dose in store to satisfy my soul.
After fighting thru the Disneyland crowd, I made my way to the House of Blues intimate Parrish Room. As I was walking in the door, who do I run into but The Quireboy’s lead singer Spike.
We exchanged greetings and I went inside. Not long after I was inside I had a couple of ladies ask me if I was Craig from CaliforniaRocker.com. They said they appreciated my stories, reviews and photos. It made me feel good to know there are those who care and pay attention.
Opening tonight was The Raskins from NYC. I first saw The Raskins when they opened up for Motley Crue and Alice Copper at the Hollywood Bowl a few summers ago. They play good old Rock N Roll, full of melody, chorus and a good hook. The Raskins are led by twin brothers Roger and Logan Raskin.
These leather-clad NYC dudes came out swinging and full of energy. They opened with “On the Radio” the first single off their self-titled album about hearing your music on the radio for the first time. The Raskins blend a mix of covers and originals into their set. After a strong start they did the Greg Kihn classic “The Breakup Song.”
Lead singer Logan Raskin keeps the music moving and the audience engaged by wasting no time between songs. He is in constant motion, running and jumping all over the stage. There is no slow songs in the set. They also did a cover of “Call Me” that took the song to another level. After ripping it up they ended with a Stooges cover “Search and Destroy.” This was rock and roll NYC style: Fast, sweaty and in your face.
The Quireboys make their triumphant return to America in support of their brilliant new album “Amazing Disgrace.” I first saw The Quireboys in 1990 at the Gathering of Tribes Festival in Costa Mesa, Calif. They were on a killer bill with the likes of Iggy Pop, The Cramps, SoundGarden, Ice-T and Public Enemy.
This show was their first time to the States playing songs off their brilliant debut album “A Bit of What You Fancy” which hit number 2 on the UK charts. Now 35 years later these English lads are still making good solid rock and roll songs together. They have been busy lately making 6 albums in the last 7 years. They just released a CD/DVD combo called “35 and Live.”
In The Quireboy’s world its always time for a party and tonight we were ready to party. The lights hit the stage and out comes Spike drink in hand and ready to rock. He raised his glass and said “we are The Quireboys and this is rock n fuckin’ roll.” They kick off with “I Love This Dirty Town” off their “Homewrecker and Heartbreakers” album.
The Quireboys live have all the piss and swagger of the early Rolling Stones and the good time attitude of the early Faces. Spike is the ultimate frontman. A Rock N Roll gypsy with a voice of an angel who had one too many whiskeys.
The Quireboys have a vast catalogue full of hits and masterpieces to chose from. Tonight they would give us a bit of what we fancy and cover all the bases. They went right into “Misled” and “There She Goes Again” before taking time for a drink. These lads are at the peak of their creativity and the songs they did off their new album “Amazing Disgrace” such as “Seven Deadly Sins” and “Original Black Eyed Son” fits right into the classic Quireboys sound.
The band is well-oiled and the twin guitar attack of Guy Griffin and Paul Guerin fills each song with memorable solos and riffs. Keith Weir’s keyboard rounds out The Quireboys sound giving the songs that English boogie feel ala Long John Baldry. Spike was now ready to turn this party up to 11. They went into the raucous “This is Rock N Roll.” It speaks for itself. We need it, we breath it, it is the only thing we know. They slowed things down a bit with the beautiful “Sweet Mary Ann.”
A song Rod Stewart wishes he wrote. Spike then said “ here’s a song we haven’t done in quite awhile, in fact I think we did it last night at the Whiskey A Go Go.” They did their early classic “ Man on the Loose” off their first album. But it wouldn’t be a Quireboys show if they didn’t do “I Don’t Love You Anymore” where Spike turns on the emotion and sincerity. It packs a punch as we all have seemed to be there are one point in out lives. He sings his heart out on this one and we are hanging on every word, singing along with he chorus.
But we know it’s getting close to call it a night when Spike screams out “What time is?” It’s time for their timeless classic “7’O’Clock.” A good old-fashioned English rave up that gets the crowd worked up. Spike is prowling the stage, swinging the microphone stand in the air and having a real good time.
The Quireboys are one of the hardest working bands in the business. They have worked hard to gain worldwide popularity and maybe one day America will embrace them the way the rest of the world has recognized their brilliance and love for their craft. Spike tipped his drink to the audience and we all raised our glasses for a toast to a great band that we were all so happy to see in a intimate rooms with good friends having a good time. Cheer mates.