With the onset of February we are getting a little busier. 2nd, Protest The Hero, 6th Del Amitri, 9th Molly Hatchet, 14th Monster Magnet, 15th Dream Theater, 19th, Sons Of Icarus, 20th Skyclad, 25th Soulfly, 26th Cadillac Three

And maybe a couple more to be added.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

STATUS QUO, The Treatment @Wolverhampton Civic Hall 13/3/13

You have to hand it to The Treatment. The chances are that if you have been to a rock gig in the last two years, they have been the opening act. In the last six months they have been around America with Kiss and Motley Crue, the length and breadth of Britain with Thin Lizzy, they have supported Slash on his recent short arena tour and now this, sold-out jaunt with the original Status Quo.

Such experience has proved invaluable and they are slowly moving from the fresh-faced kids with potential that RTM saw at the bottom of a free gig in Nuneaton a couple of years ago to a confident hard rock band.

Depending on your point of view they are outdated glam chancers, or are trying to inject some of the sunset strip into British rock. At RTM we are very much in the latter camp and, whilst you are never going to get a Dream Theater or Slayer or whoever singing songs like “I Want Love” or “Get The Party On” in a world where bands like Bon Jovi are sticking out execrable nonsense, there needs to be some good time rock and roll about and in that respect The Treatment are as good as it gets right now.

In case you didn’t know this reunion of the original Status Quo line-up – “The Frantic Four” of Francis Rossi, Rick Parfitt, John Coughlan and Alan Lancaster – is a pretty big deal. This is the bands second show in Wolverhampton in the space of a week and both were sold out.

The chants of “Quo, Quo, Quo” have started almost as soon as The Treatment end and at 8.05 precisely the houselights go down and the voice says “Are you ready to rock? Will you welcome the finest rock band in the world…..Status Quo!” The quartet duly launch into the old blues boogie standard “Junior’s Wailing.”

To say the reception is good is an understatement. All around RTM there is pandemonium a fact that the effortlessly charming Rossi has 3, albeit cheekily, when he says “you feel better now? It like you have finished after whatsitcalled….you’ve had your climax now, you’ve climaxed all over this band…”

Actually the whole show is one big thrill. Absolutely flawless from beginning to end, the band is clearly loving it and the crowd lap it up. The songs too are pretty much just a joyous run-through of boogie, Lancaster sings the first two, Parfitt weighs in with “Little Lady” and Rossi sings most of the rest.

The two guitarists show their skills here, with the interplay really to the fore, while Coughlan – who has aged a little better than bassman Lancaster, who is clearly struggling with his movement by the end – keeps the beat superbly despite the stifling heat.

After “Roadhouse Blues” finishes the main set they are soon back for “Don’t Waste My Time” and the Chuck Berry standard “Bye Bye Johnny almost literally waves us a fond farewell.

This is the second time RTM has seen Quo. The first was the Christmas show last year, which was good, but nowhere near as good as this. This is Quo as they should be, just a damn fine boogie rock band, with rubbish like “Margarita Time” and a Christmas carol medley stripped away. The gig had a relaxed vibe – Lancaster found time to pick his nose before “(April) Spring Summer and Wednesdays” for example – but was an almost perfect celebration of a fine British rock band. 

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