AMERICAN ROCK LIVE
At the Parkhaus
Duisburg in Germany
October 9th 1998
 

from RockHard (Germany)
by Matthias Breusch
translated by Yvonne Kluitman
corrected by Thomas Lipschultz, Wyrdwad

   

Chris Caffery: guitar
John West: vocals
Mike Terrana: drums
Barend Courbois: bass

The economy's dropping worldwide, money doesn't get spent that easily and risk-bearing investments have a bad name nowadays. One should think that a spontaneus session-project like "American Rock Live" on the overcrowded German concert market doesn't stand a chance. Wrong!! Indeed, there weren't a lot of people coming to the mini-tour of the guys Caffery (g.Savatage), West (v.Badlands, Artension), Terrana (dr.Artension, MacAlpine, Malmsteen and soon with Pell) and Courbois (b.Vengeance), but the gig in the German number-one metaltown proved that these kinds of live activities can bring about an enthusiastic crowd. Around 120 people - some from as far as Schleswig-Holstein and Bavaria - filled the homely miniclub at the Meidericher City park to get a treat of the American-Dutch company.

Extremely satisfied about the easy-going atmosphere and the good care, the four gentlemen climbed the little stage in an excellent mood. From the first song (Savatage's "Black Jack Guillotine") to the encore (Deep Purple's "Mistreated"), the sympathetic group was rocking and grooving the place for two hours. On behalf of the brilliant sound by the Manowar soundguy, it's no wonder that a part of the audience had to go outside to put some paperwork in their ears. They were playing all kinds of stuff including classics like Malmsteen's "Liar" which linked up very well to the older John West songs (great resemblance to Jeff Scott Soto & Talisman). There was some brand new material ("Justament" from John & Chris) and a lot of progressive instumental passages. The musicians brought power, heaviness, technique and feeling into perfect balance, and with their smooth and thight play they made a lot of jaws drop while watching the stage. Even the staffed policemen had a good time.

Chris Caffery presented himself, freed from the Savatage chain, in a playful top form. Mike Terrana drummed like an "animal", Barend Courbois played the bass solo of the year and John (who is, by the way, a born Cherokee) crowned it all with a superior voice and radiation. If you can play songs with this strenght without a hitch which are normally played with 5 to 6 musicians including a keyboardist, you deserve all the credit. No wonder you could stumble over the happy faces after the gig in the Parkhaus. Band, organizer and fans alike were very satisfied. No doubt about it, "this kind of concerts may be organized a lot more often".

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