Live Review: Corey Taylor & The Junk Beer Kidnap Band – Dead Man's Hand, Las Vegas
Mon, 04 Jan 2010 10:35:19
Rock N' roll needs a new leader.
Trent Reznor hung the game (and Twitter) up last year. Dave Grohl is back behind the drum kit. Pearl Jam won't be around forever, unfortunately. So the genre needs a new icon—someone that's got something to say, but can say it with charisma. Corey Taylor is that leader. The Slipknot, Stone Sour and Junk Beer Kidnap Band frontman has got the voice, vibe and vitality. He exudes attitude, but most importantly, the man delivers at every show with every note.
On New Years Eve, Taylor rang in 2010 with over two hours of music at Dead Man's Hand in Las Vegas. Dead Man's Hand is Scott Ian and Jerry Cantrell's brand new rock n' roll hang in Sin City. Corey hit the stage with a thrashy take on Guns N' Roses' "It's So Easy." Taylor's hypnotic vocals sharpened the classic with a psychedelic edge, and he tore through the verse and the chorus with true swagger.
Corey's Junk Beer Kidnap Band is equally engaging. Bassist Jason Christopher Rappise seamlessly shifts from fret-burning fireworks to soulful punk playing. Jason keeps the intensity alive in every groove—never stopping for a breath or breaking the headbang. His run at the beginning of "It's So Easy" set everything in motion.
Meanwhile, drummer Dustin Schoenhofer played with enough passion and power to wake up Keith Moon's ghost. He can spin sticks one second, and then come down like a hammer with a beat in the next. His fedora never moved either—that's some talent.
When Taylor joked, "Expect the unexpected," he couldn't have been more dead-on. Hearing him croon The Gin Blossoms' "Hey Jealousy" was utterly entrancing. He gave the song guts, while preserving its pop prowess. The smile never left his face on the chorus either. However, Corey, Dustin, Jason and Co. truly shined during the original cuts. "Shine" pulsated during the bass and drum build up, while Corey's voice took over on the unforgettable chorus becoming as heartfelt as it was heavy. Think the Foo Fighters with a little more grit and balls…"Kansas" was impetuously infectious and will no doubt be all over the radio once it's officially released.
Taylor and pals gave Billy Joel's "I May Be Crazy" a metallic spin on its head. The cover was fun, completely out-of-left-field and just plain awesome. Green Day's "She" and "Am I Evil?" were palpably potent too. Then there were the guest appearances. What's a New Years show without them? Meat Loaf and Corey dueted on a bluesy and bouncy "Honky Tonk Woman." Every Time I Die's Keith Buckley injected some hardcore energy into The Misfits' "Where Eagles Dare," while Scott Ian blasted through the riff. Queen V's take on "Whole Lotta Love" reached heights of classic rock elegance. All around, the rock never stopped until 2010 began and beyond.
Vegas held a special significance for everyone there, especially Taylor. Mid-set, he exclaimed, "I actually got married to my lovely wife right here in Las Vegas, everybody say, 'Hi Steph!'" The crowd immediately responded back. There was something endearing about the entire performance. That moment was just one part. As raucous as things could get—especially once Vinnie Paul hit the stage—Taylor kept everything righteously real. That's exactly what a legend is supposed to be.
2010 should be a hell of a year for rock n' roll once the new Stone Sour record hits.
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