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Michael Monroe - Rescue Rooms, Nottingham - December 1 2013 (Live Review)

Tuesday, 03 December 2013 Written by Gemma Johnson

Michael Monroe is back. This show falls smack-bang in the middle of his Horns And Halos tour, just a couple of years removed from his last festive jaunt around the UK.

This time around, guitarist Dregen is absent as he’s currently promoting his solo record with a trio of shows. Rich Jones has stepped in temporarily, having spent the last few years playing with Ginger Wildheart, and is already practically part of the furniture.

Opening tonight’s proceedings are local quartet the Hip Priests, fronted by Nathan Von Cruz. Despite a few technical issues the band manage to pull off their stated aim - to combine the cocksure swagger of Iggy Pop with the danger of Motorhead’s Lemmy Kilmister.

As showtime approaches, the almost empty venue morphs into a packed-to-the-rafters affair. Steve Conte, bassist Sami Yaffa and Jones make their entrances, followed by drummer Karl Rockfist and the man himself.

Sandwiched between a generous helping of killer new tracks from 'Horns And Halos' - Stained Glass Heart, Ballard Of The Lower East Side and Soul Surrender - are favourites from 2011’s ‘Sensory Overdrive’, including the punk-fuelled Got Blood and the anthemic, saxophone-saturated Trick of The Wrist. But they’re nothing compared to the surprises on offer in the form of old Hanoi Rocks classics Malibu Beach Nightmare and Underwater World.

Monroe oozes energy as he runs from side to side on the stage, high kicking, jumping and high fiving fans. The sweat-soaked power pouring out of this man is incredible. But, as always, it’s Conte’s backing vocals and bluesy contributions that act as the final cog in an electric performance.

As the curfew creeps ever closer, it’s out with the old and in with the new for encore Saturday Night Special, before another Hanoi track, Problem Child, and a version of Demolition 23’s Nothin’s Alright. Monroe and his merry men demonstrate how rock ‘n’ roll is done and the flamboyant frontman proves, without any doubt, that he’s still got it.

Michael Monroe UK & Ireland Tour Dates are as follows

Tue December 03 2013 - WOLVERHAMPTON Slade Rooms
Wed December 04 2013 - LONDON O2 Academy Islington

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