The Dead Daisies/The Amorettes: Liquid Rooms, Edinburgh
13th June 2017

ian sutherland
Words: Ian Sutherland, Pictures: Gary Cooper

dead daisies

There are some things you can absolutely guarantee at any show by Scottish power trio The Amorettes. A good time is one. Another is hearing a selection of catchy, riff powered tunes which worm their way into your head. My favourite though is whether it's a headline show in a packed club, a festival where no one knows them yet or a cramped stage in a support slot like tonight, I know for a fact that within seconds of starting their first song (tonight it's 'Stealing Thunder') a statement will have been made to the audience. Guitarist/vocalist Gill Montgomery and bassist Heather McKay will be at the front, foot raised on the monitors, head up while drummer Hannah McKay drives the song along. Immediately the message is we're here to rock whether you like it or not, you might as well enjoy it!

Tonight as every night a packed Liquid Rooms gets the message straight away and responds in kind. Only given half an hour in a venue with a curfew they race through a selection of songs designed to give a short, sharp shock, full of simple lyrical choruses, driving rhythms and more memorable riffs than most Metal bands manage in a career.

dead daisies

There are great solos too, Ms Montgomery's long fingers are seemingly designed to eke out flurries of notes effortlessly and long hair flying she looks every inch the Metal Axe God up there. It's the tunes that make the biggest impression though with the back to back pairing of 'Bull By The Horns' and 'Give 'Em Hell' shaking the room with their energy and 'Let The Neighbours Call The Cops' showing how a nicely placed riff really can take a tune to another level.

Traditional set closer 'Hot And Heavy' gets the crowd singing as always and after only thirty minutes these rocking ladies from West Lothian have triumphed again. They satisfied their fans in the crowd and made a lot of new friends and that seems to be what happens every time I see them. Another guarantee!

dead daisies

It was a surprise to fans of The Dead Daisies when among a plethora of summer festival and European club dates the band announced one solitary headline show in the UK at Edinburgh's Liquid Rooms. Take that London! Local fans responded by selling out the venue so a packed and by this time sweaty crowd roared a welcome at the opening bars of 'Long Way To Go'. Paired with 'Mexico' the opening songs showed that these guys can write a powerful tune wedded to classic rock traditions and nodding to the musical experience of the musicians on stage.

I have seen few bands live who look as collectively confident on a stage as these five guys. There is a lot of natural presence up there and if bass player Marco Mendoza and lead guitarist Doug Aldrich don't use a classic rock star move then it's not worth knowing. Singer John Corabi can hardly look less like he was once a member of Motley Crue with his shaggy beard and casual style but he still has the cool attitude befitting a lead singer and a warm, strong voice to go with it. Rhythm guitarist David Lowy looks cool behind his white flying V and Brian Tichy is both powerful and shows some real imagination behind his drum kit although I could have done without the lengthy drum solo.

dead daisies

They did manage to play lots of songs too of course. Traditional rockers from their catalogue from the bluesy 'Locked And Loaded' to the full on roar of 'Mainline' are well received. Crowd singalong tune 'Make Some Noise' goes down well too although that's not their strongest tune. Of course they do a fine line in cover songs too and tonight we get a rearranged version of CCR's 'Fortunate Son' and enjoyable runs through band favourites 'We're An American Band' from Grand Funk Railroad and The Who's 'Join Together'.

The crowd lapped up everything the band threw at them so no time was wasted trooping off and on the stage for an encore. The guys just stayed on stage and ended with a cover which has become a signature song from them, a terrific, powerful take on Alex Harvey's 'Midnight Moses'. I wonder sometimes how many people realise it's not a Daisies original, although to be fair it certainly was introduced as a song " one of your own" to the Scottish crowd tonight.

dead daisies

The Dead Daisies are a hugely competent and professional band made up of experienced musicians. Every ounce of that experience was on show tonight and the partisan crowd here absolutely loved it. For me it felt slightly wrong that going home it was the covers that the headline act played that stuck in my memory and I certainly didn't enjoy the drum solo but most of their fans left the venue satisfied and happy, and that surely is what rock'n'roll is all about.

beer beer

The Amorettes:

beer beer beerbeerbeerbeer beer beerbeerbeer

The Dead Daisies:

beer beer beerbeerbeerbeer beer beerbeerbeer

Check out more of Ian Sutherland right here.

16th June 2017

metal talk