Tuesday, July 15, 2014
SLASH AND THE CONSPIRATORS JULY 11TH OTTAWA BLUESFEST
Pure, unadulterated adulation greeted Saul Hudson and his mates as they appeared to dispense good will and face-melting solos to the thousands that had gathered around the Bell Stage last Friday evening.
With ever-present Les Paul slung low and leather "topper" balanced perfectly on his head, the fret-burning legend ripped an ultra-tight, 11 song set, abetted by his Conspirators. Leading off with "Ghost" from his 2010 solo disc, the band burned with the intensity of a blast furnace, though it was vocalist Myles Kennedy who was most impressive throughout. His operatic vox were nothing less than a masterclass in jaw dropping technique, especially as he tackled several Guns and Roses classics and didn't seem to break a sweat in doing so.
Highlights? Pretty much every tune, though "Anastasia" was noteworthy for some very tasty flamenco style runs that the star of the show played on a custom double neck. Throwing "Slither" into the mix (from Velvet Revolver) was an inspired choice, too.
Predictably, the opening salvo of "Sweet Child of Mine" elicited the most frantic response from the crowd. One guy's head actually exploded within seconds of hearing the intro.
But that's how it goes at these rock'n'roll shows...
Slash's fluid playing remains very fine and he seemed to gain energy from Kennedy's note perfect delivery. "Paradise City" closed out the proceedings, complete with flaming telepaths, apocalyptic riffing (courtesy of Sabbath's "Zero the Hero"), ten thousand killer bees performing the Minute Waltz channeled through the stacks and one hell of a finish.
Brevity being the soul of wit, the lads disappeared leaving everyone with a taste for more.
You are well advised to catch Slash and his devastating guitar tone in the act if he's in your neighbourhood this summer.