Review by Anita LandeMost bands have their one or two hits and vanish quickly from the music scene...until they show up on one of those "Where Are they Now" shows on your favorite cable network. Cheap Trick don't have to worry about that as they have been playing solid rock n' roll for over 25 years now. With their unusual rock songs, catchy lyrics and signature choruses that have permanently branded themselves in every fans brains, the bands' music is relevant and vital even though the buying public might disagree. Go to a Cheap Trick show, fan or not, and you will witness a memorable concert.
Photos by Niva Bringas
Cheap Trick's lead vocalist Robin Zander seems to be one of the best dressed male vocalists around, and at The Vic he was wearing a slick plaid suit letting his blonde hair flow back and forth as he kicked off the show with the sugary sweetness of "Hello There." Wildman and lead guitarist Rick Nielsen had fun with the audience as always, making sure he flung enough guitar picks out to the anxious, but unusually mellow audience. Nielson's power chords kept churning like a windmill in a hurricane. His goofy stage antics and stage preenings were a nice contrast to Zander's kinda laid-back cool stage presence. Tom Pettersson and Bun E. Carlos, bass and drums respectively, were right on holding up the rhythm section to a tee. In fact the solid foundation they laid let Nielson's churnings flower even more without the constraints of missed beats.
Zander had some early technical problems as he kept getting bad shocks from his microphone, so the show stopped briefly, but not to worry as Nielsen poked around with the crowd for a while, shaking hands and being his usual playful self. Zander then came back and sang many crowd pleasers including some new songs and some classic tunes like "Big Eyes," "Tonight It's You," "Surrender" and "Dream Police." Even though he missed the high notes on "If You Want My Love," his vocals were almost as good as they were 20 years ago. Their music is straight forward power ballads with the passion never losing it's hold on the group.
Cheap Trick has just launched into their 2003 worldwide tour, and even though they've been around for a few decades, their songs are still rock-n-roll classics and yes, we still love to hear those six words..."I Want You to Want Me".. psst..Don't worry boys, we always will!
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