All of the heavy shows that had been bombarding us on our adventures outside of PiercingMetal Headquarters this past week found us needing a dose of the classic stuff and in that we chose to brave the incredible rainstorm that was hitting the East Coast for a set of tunes by the one and only Blue Oyster Cult. The band now features Rudy Sarzo and that intrigued us all the more. Check out the full article below.
Artist: Blue Oyster Cult
Venue: B.B. King Blues Club (New York, NY)
Label: Sony Music
We started our March Metal Madness last Saturday in this very same vicinity in preparation for the mighty Kreator and continued along with Hammerfall on Sunday. Orphaned Land and Suidakra came up on Monday and the unexpected bump in the road by W.A.S.P. happened Thursday but this was fortunately washed away by the magic of Tragedy’s final show ever on Friday. It was surely one busy week for the Metal heads who saw those events and mind you Alice In Chains played two nights as well but we didn’t participate in those since we had other events to be a part of. All of the insanely heavy and astoundingly creative Metal and Rock energies that we absorbed all week found us seeking a little bit of solace with those legends of Hard Rock, Blue Oyster Cult, and in order to do that we needed to brave the absolutely torrential rainstorm that was hitting the city. I’m not against getting a little wet for the sake of a show, but let me tell you this, it was horrible outside and the winds were setting things over on their end to boot. You know it’s a bad storm when you are in the middle of Times Square and the region is barren of mass amounts of tourists. So down into the caverns of B.B. King’s we went to keep dry and to enjoy some surely inspirational Heavy Rock. The Blue Oyster Cult stops by B.B.’s usually a couple of times a year and does two shows, but tonight’s gig would be the first of two performances on the same night and that was pretty different for me. I opted for the earlier show and this one started pretty much on the mark of 7:30pm. Here is how it went.
As far as bands that I appreciate and enjoy are concerned, I have always respected and admired the legendary status of the BOC, but can admit that they were never one of the bands that I followed around with diehard attention levels. Like many of the casual fans of the world, I had my favorites from their repertoire and am very guilty of their two biggest radio staples as being the quickest ones that I remember. Since their inception the band has gone through a number of lineup changes over the years and now stands as sole original members Eric Bloom and Donald “Buck Dharma” Roeser and when it comes down to it they are like the Stanley & Simmons or Tyler & Perry for this band. Everyone else is important to the bands musical makeup, but without either one of the pair, would really be difficult for a lot of their fans to enjoy. Rounding out the bands roster is the one and only Rudy Sarzo on bass, Ritchie Castellano on guitars and keyboards and Jules Radino on drums. I found it interesting when I recalled how the last time that I caught BOC was when Ritchie was playing his first gig with them. That night also featured Bobby Rondinelli on drums and he was finishing up his tenure on the drum throne with the band at that same show. The guys hit the stage with a terrific volume level tonight and since this was a seated show that was a good thing to find as you don’t want to blast the people out of their chairs for an hour like some of the more throttling Metal shows do to their crowd. Their opening tune was “This Ain’t The Summer Of Love” and from there it was quickly into “Burnin’ For You” which is one of those favorites of my own and has been for many, many years.
“Buck’s Boogie” came up quick and showcased just how great a guitar player Buck is and from this it was into “Shooting Shark” which was a tune that really showcased the powerhouse bass playing of Sarzo. He is a journeyman performer and I was happy to see him working with BOC and had to wonder how long he was planning on sticking around. Eric talked a little bit and said how they were going to switch things up a little bit tonight and this led us into “The Golden Age Of Leather” and after another number we were brought face to face with that monster from the far east “Godzilla”. The tune is probably one of the most beloved of the bands tracks and I think if I am correct with my history here, was the number that first called a lot of attention to the band. It was during “Godzilla” that we got an extended bass solo from Sarzo and some cool drum happenings from Radino. He seemed to be a very solid player and was handling all of the BOC melodies with apparent ease and this was the first time I had heard his name so I enjoyed seeing what he was all about. When the introductions came around for the show Eric handled them and of course introduced “Buck”, Ritchie and Jules but when they got to Mr. Rudy Sarzo they really played with it and said from Quiet Riot, from Ozzy Osbourne and from Whitesnake. What made this rather amusing was how the band played riffs from “Metal Health”, “Crazy Train” and “Here I Go Again” from those three acts. Rudy has certainly been a busy bee over the course of his career and did you know that while he played with those three juggernauts over the course of his thirty year history, he is only on about ten studio recordings in total. He’s written a biography called “Off The Rails” which I must check out soon.
“Don’t Fear The Reaper” seemed to be the last official song of the set list but Bloom quickly spoke and said how they had one more and this was when Ritchie took over and delivered the vocals and some additional guitar for “The Red And Black”. The whole show was over in about 75 minutes and I had to say that the shortness of it surprised me just a little bit. I knew that a second show was coming up later in the night but I felt that with no opening act to enjoy that the band could have given the audience just a little bit more to make it more worthy of their concert dollar. Even the legendary acts are finding their fans being hesitant in spending the money for shows based on the economy and in the end while this was satisfying for me based on their playing those songs I enjoy the most, it might not have been as good an experience for those fans who wanted a wider scope of tunes from the bands historic repertoire. My recommendation is that a dual performance gig is probably not the one for the hardcore listener and instead more for those who are the casual fans because they will not avoid the classics at those shows. If you wanted a longer performance I think that waiting for a gig that they show as playing only one set might be the safer option. March Metal Madness would continue to decimate the month as both Anvil and Ace Frehley were set to appear in town over the next few days. Those were sure to be rocking gigs.
1. This Ain’t The Summer Of Love
2. Burnin’ For You
3. Buck’s Boogie
4. Shooting Shark
5. The Golden Age Of Leather
6. Then Came The Last Days Of May
7. Godzilla / Bass Solo / Drum Solo
8. Don’t Fear) The Reaper
9. The Red and Black
It’s always nice to see legendary Hard Rock performers with their name up in lights, so here is a shot of the venerated B.B. King Blues Club marquee announcing this evenings festivities.
Official Website: http://www.blueoystercult.com