Slash - Live At The Hollywood Palladium: Review
Tue, 08 Dec 2015 12:23:33
(October 23, 2015. Los Angeles, CA) Slash's performance at the historic Hollywood Palladium was a lesson in juxtaposition. While the iconic guitarist of Guns N' Roses fame played his signature Les Paul guitar with boundless dynamism, the demeanor he exuded from the stage was calm, modest even. The sign hanging above the stage at the glamorous venue read "SLASH" in giant lettering and might have had the audience thinking that the world renowned guitarist would be front and center throughout the show sitting on a throne while plucking away. Instead, dressed in a black tank top with his curly hair tamed by that quintessential top hat, Slash found his home on the side of the stage only making his way to the center a few times throughout the show to unleash a torrent of his blazing solos.
Opening with a Slash with Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators original, "You're a Lie" had the crowd head banging from the start with a crunchy riff lifting from Slash's guitar. As the song built, Kennedy's highly trained soaring vocals blew away the audience. The first Guns N' Roses cover of the night was "Nightrain" and it put to good use the stacks of Marshall amps that stood behind Slash, dousing the audience in core shaking volumes. The decibels at the show would have made Motorhead proud. Performing many more SMK&C original's off their last two albums 2012's Apocalyptic Love and 2014's World on Fire as well as songs off of Slash's 2010 self-titled solo album, the band played tight all night always leaving plenty of space in each track for their headliner to give the crowd exactly what it wanted; face melting solos.
"Welcome to the Jungle" brought bassist Todd Kerns to the mic and his Axl-esque vocals were gritty perfection with an excitement and energy that made the song feel brand new, as if it were Guns N' Roses in 1986 on the Sunset Strip all over again. A highlight of the night came in the form of another GNR hit, "Rocket Queen" in which Slash took center stage and unleashed a 20-minute solo of pure euphoric musicianship. Pointing his guitar at the crowd he played straight at his audience, shooting them down with burning notes that bent and rang with absolute precision.
Never much for words, Slash simply told his fans in the crowd, "Does my heart good to see all you fuckers," with his hand on his chest before returning to the stage to play the encore song "Paradise City." "You ready?" Slash asked with a smirk before starting the song's celebrated melody. Smoke and confetti filled the venue and rained down on the audience as the song launched into its thrashing breakdown. The show ended with Slash soloing behind his head, which whipped the crowd into a frenzy of deafening exultant screams.
It's been more than 30 years since Slash first started playing the Sunset Strip and what drew listeners to his music then is what continues to draw them in today; an ability to play inimitable riffs and solos that cut with technique and bleed with emotion. With the help of Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators, Slash reminded the audience why he is considered one of the finest guitarists in the world.
—The ARTISTdirect Staff
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