Vain, State Line Empire, Leather Duchess, The Whisky, January 6, 2017
After a triumphant appearance at last year’s epic Hair Nation Festival taking place at the now closed Irvine Meadows Ampheather, the legendary Vain found themselves kicking off 2017 with a short yet very sweet headlining tour. Making a stop at the iconic Whisky A Go Go on the Sunset Strip, Vain had the crowd going absolutely wild throughout the entire set! Davy Vain and his hard rocking co-horts were in magnificent form, enveloping The Whisky with grand slam selections from their 1989 debut recording No Respect as well as other classic songs from their notorious career. From the opening refrains of Secrets, Love Drug and beyond, one noticed right away front man Davy Vain’s boundless energy and dynamic vocals more lively and powerful than ever.
The audience sang along to all songs old and new, presenting Vain a rapturous response deserved of a band giving over 100 percent on the stage. In addition to the rip roaring performance of Davy Vain, the entire lineup was on fire, including rapturous performances from Jaime Scott on guitar, Joel Pronto on guitar, Ashley Mitchell on bass and Tommy Rickard on drums. Expect the next raging chapter of Vain entitled Rolling With The Punches to be unleashed sometime in early 2017. And be sure to catch Vain the next time they show up with their own ferocious brand of rock and roll mayhem.
Vain on Facebook
State Line Empire
In addition to the rollicking performance from Vain, the support acts found on the bill were equally as impressive, demonstrating two very distinct yet crucial sides to our local Los Angeles music scene. In the direct support slot was State Line Empire, who unleashed a super intensive set of nu-metal inspired hard rock. They played it all loud with an almighty sense of urgency, clearly gaining attention of a crowd primed and ready to witness a Vain concert. Opening with the ominously yet supremely heavy Drive Me followed by the edgy Sick, State Line Empire penetrated the room with a sound that absolutely stunned the senses. And for a grand and wicked cover surprise, State Line Empire roared into a punkish rendition of She by the Misfits, with drummer Jay taking over the lead vocal duties with a vengeance. Another highlight was the mighty and aptly titled Mother F*cker, a furiously scathing anthem destined to gain the band a good deal of attention in the LA music scene and beyond.
Tyson’s vocals were superb, enveloping the heart and soul with a fiery intensity. Cat sent everything into the stratosphere with his combustible guitar work while bassist Pete and aforementioned drummer Jay made for a tremendous tight rhythm section. Future State Line Empire shows include opening slots with vast and varied collectives such as Powerman 5000, Paul Gilbert and L.A. Guns, so there are plenty of chances for locals to catch up with what the thrills and chills this new band has to offer the world at large.
State Line Empire on Facebook
Leather Duchess reminds one of the classic story of a hair metal rock and roll band making their way to the City Of Angels to seek their fame and fortune. And whether that tale is told on the onset of the 90’s or in the ultramodern days of the present, there is no denying the raw talent and raging good fun Leather Duchess exudes tenfold from the stage. Proving the age old adage that rock and roll will never die, it is a real treat to discover young collectives such as Leather Duchess enrapturing a whole new generation of fans hungry for wildly infectious, in-your-freakin’-face rock and roll. The crowd reaction by the stage was through the roof as Leather Duchess unleashed sonically delicious treats such as Altar Of Love, On My Knees, and Young Smut.
Marc Edgar and Nao Nakashima unveiled some truly rip roaring axe work on dueling guitars while Colton Seaver kept it low and nasty on bass, The appropriately named Jake “The Animal” Wolf delivered a primal and thoroughly ferocious and skillful performance on drums. And then there was the wildly charismatic Leather Duchess front man Tyler Heath, delivering explosively captivating vocals that sent the entire room spinning. The closing anthem Gunslinger sounded like a hit in any age where rock and roll reigns supreme. Be sure to catch Leather Duchess the next time they swagger into your town as their live show is truly not to be missed!
Leather Duchess on Facebook
(Review by Ken Morton – Photos by Jack Lue)