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  • Live Review: Camp Freddy - The Roxy, Hollywood

    Fri, 16 May 2008 08:14:05

    Live Review: Camp Freddy - The Roxy, Hollywood - So you wanna be a rock superstar?

    Slipknot and Stone Sour frontman, Corey Taylor, could very well be a superhero, if he wanted to be. He got his chance to fly with Camp Freddy last night, leaping from one classic rock cover to another in a single bound. In fact, while sharing a stage with Dave Navarro, Matt Sorum and Jerry Cantrell, Corey transformed into a bona fide rock god quicker than Clark Kent can hop out of a phone booth. Yes, he remains metal's best frontman. However, last night, a chichi crowd of Hollywood elite got to witness what so many metal heads already knew: Corey's got some serious pipes and overpowering charisma. To put it simply, he's a frontman to be reckoned with. Once he launched into a shirtless rendition of Van Halen's "Ain't Talkin' Bout Love," all bets were off. Even the chic, model-looking types couldn't keep their eyes off of him as he dominated the stage, bringing David Lee Roth to the 21st century. He scaled the wall of mainstream rock, like Spiderman climbing a skyscraper. Now, he's staying there. That's what Camp Freddy encourages though, ass-kicking, old fashioned rock and roll.

    Ever since they commenced their May residency three weeks ago, Camp Freddy has simply transformed The Roxy into Hollywood's Thursday-Night-Place-To-Be. This show was easily the most explosive so far. Alice in Chains mastermind Jerry Cantrell joined the fold for a raucous rendition of "Highway to Hell," complete with a smooth guitar solo volley between him and Navarro. Just like characters out of a Tarantino flick, these rock stars simply emanate "cool," in the most classic sense of the word. Navarro exclaimed, "So Jerry Cantrell wants to do an AC/DC song. I guess we're going to have to do it." Navarro was, and always is, the consummate ringleader of the show. His tight chops, classic black bucket hat and dangling cigarette make for a larger than life presence that he's more than comfortable with. As Jerry Cantrell tore through a gate-busting rendition of Thin Lizzy's "Jailbreak," Navarro played to the crowd channeling energy right through his fret board into a rapturous lead. As the ashes dangled from his cigarette, he smiled at the crowd. You can't mess with that. These legendary personalities in Camp Freddy are kings of rock and roll, and this legendary venue is their court.

    Another big moment came when B-Real and Sen Dog of Cypress Hill hit the stage for "Rock Superstar." Navarro cracked another joke, "These two just wandered over from the Rainbow." However, that was true. Navarro played the song's creepy sampled intro on his PRS, and B-Real rocked the crowd, sparking the most bumping and grinding all night. Everybody in attendance wants to be a "Rock Superstar," that's why they're at Camp Freddy. So it was only fitting that the band tore through that hip hop-rock crossover classic. Other guests that brought the house down included Def Leppard's Vivian Campbell. However, the biggest surprise was Chad Smith of Red Hot Chili Peppers. Both brought their own flare and personality to the set, making for an even more special show.

    However, the centerpiece of this show was Taylor. This isn't the crowd that the masked purveyor of metal normally plays to. When Navarro introduced him as "Corey from Slipknot and Stone Sour," most of the girls in the audience looked a tad bit bewildered. If anyone can overcome a crowd that doesn't "get it" off the bat though, it's Taylor. He’ll rock all the Chanel and Christian Dior right off of you, and that’s what he did. Once Mike Inez emerged with a bass guitar behind him and Cantrell flanked him at stage left, he commented, "Can I just say that this is the most surreal moment of my entire fucking life." Then the band kicked right into Alice In Chains' classic "Them Bones." Corey's voice proved hypnotic, and he channeled the spirit of Layne Staley right in the room. No one could take their eyes off of him. Alice In Chains was certainly an influence, but here he got to say thanks. After that the shirtless Taylor dried himself off, and the sold out audience couldn’t get enough. So he laughed, "Anybody heard of a band called Free? You know what song we're going to give you, right?" "Alright Now" has never sounded more alive or vibrant as it did with Navarro ripping the lead, and Taylor crooning. Then to later on see Chad Smith and Matt Sorum drumming together, the night proved utterly epic.

    So, you want to be a rock superstar? Just do what Cypress Hill and Corey Taylor did, and spend a summer night at Camp Freddy.

    —Rick Florino

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