Journey, Loverboy and Pat Benatar delivered a triple blast

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Journey, Loverboy and Pat Benatar delivered a triple blast

Postby tater1977 » Thu Sep 27, 2012 10:10 pm

Journey, Loverboy and Pat Benatar delivered a triple blast of ’80s nostalgia Tuesday night at Copps Coliseum.

http://tablet.thespec.com/whatson/artic ... s-live-on#


None of the three bands have had a major hit in 20 years, but their music persists with the help of classic rock radio, video games, karaoke machines, reality TV shows and the Broadway hit/movie, Rock of Ages.

It was the old hits that drew more than 7,000 fans to Copps for their own Rock of Ages party. And they revelled in them.

Let’s face it, if you grew up in the ’80s the songs of Journey, Benatar and Loverboy are part of your molecular structure.

Thanks to MTV and FM radio, their songs were unavoidable. They burrowed into your pores, hiding away for choice opportunities to pounce again, grabbing you by the shirt in the closing scene of The Sopranos and making your heart go pitter-patter while watching the kids from Glee offer up yet another version of Don’t Stop Believing.


Welcome to the land of power ballads and feel-good anthems, a world of open shirts, soaring guitars, leather pants and over-the-top vocals. It’s a place where all notes are worth leaning into, even if you’re closing in on 60 like Pat Benatar.

The show opened with Canada’s own Loverboy, with a roly-poly Mike Reno — still sporting his signature head band to catch what could only be imaginary sweat — lumbering through a 40-minute set and bringing it to its inevitable conclusion, Working For The Weekend.

It wasn’t a pretty sight, but Reno and 66-year-old guitarist Paul Dean proved they still have the sonic chops to do the job. A good chunk of the audience gave Loverboy a standing ovation … for old times’ sake, no doubt.

Next up was Benatar. At 59, Benatar has kept good care of her classically trained voice, belting out hits like All Fired Up Invincible, We Belong (with a loudly irritating synthesizer loop) and Hit Me With Your Best Shot with ease.


Love Is A Battlefield is one of the top female rock songs of the time and Benatar did it justice Tuesday. She was backed by a tight three-piece band led by her guitar-slinging husband of 30 years, Neil “Spyder” Giraldo, whose muscle guitar flourish at the end of Heartbreaker was one of the highlights of the night.

Journey earned headliner status by the sheer weight of the 80 million records the band has sold since forming in San Francisco in the early ‘70s.

Guitarist Neal Schon, bassist Ross Valory and keyboard player Jonathan Cain are masters of power chording, turning every song into a high-energy anthem. Schon even performed our own anthem, O Canada, turning it into a guitar solo midway through the set.

Relative newcomer Arnel Pineda, who was plucked by Schon from a Filipino cover band 2007 demonstrated immediately that he’s got a big enough voice to fill the shoes of longtime lead singer Steve Perry. At age 45, Pineda also injects some needed youth into the band — both Valory and Cain are on the gray side of 60, with Schon rapidly approaching it. The diminutive Pineda darted about the stage like a firefly, constantly urging the audience to do that wavy thing with their arms. The audience readily obliged.


By the time Pineda crooned into treacle of Faithfully, the waving arms near the front of the stage were all holding open smart phones. There were even a few Bic lighters held high. (Somehow smart phones don’t carry the same emotive appeal as Bic lighters, but they are safer).

The hits rolled out at hyper speed — Any Way You Want It, Anytime, Wheel In The Sky, Escape, Be Good To Yourself, Open Arms and, of course, Don’t Stop Believing with its exploding confetti conclusion.


As long as someone is singing Don’t Stop Believing, the ’80s will never die.

grockingham@thespec.com
Perry's good natured bonhomie & the world’s most charmin smile,knocked fans off their feet. Sportin a black tux,gigs came alive as he swished around the stage thrillin audiences w/ charisma that instantly burnt the oxygen right out of the venue.TR.com
tater1977
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