After witnessing an amazing performance by Halestorm at Hellfest, I wanted to see them again in a more intimate setting. So, when I heard they were coming to Tempe to play at Marquee Theater I knew I had to be at that show. The fact that Halestorm is doing this tour with Lita Ford made it way more appealing as I have been looking to see Lita live for a long time. So I when down to the Marquee last Tuesday night to catch the show I came across with a huge turn out for a Tuesday night.
I got to Marquee Theater right on time to catch LA’s latest sensation Dorothy which is the band opening the night on this tour. With a mix of blues and southern rock Dorothy fits perfectly the bill as their music is catchy and spiced up the mood right before Lita Ford hits the stage. Dorothy is not your typical LA band influenced by the glory of the 80’s and the sentiment of Sunset Strip. No, they are a more sophisticated band, full of blues guitar blues hooks and caramelized with the sexy and powerful voice of vocalist Dorothy. A great band to open a good hard rock night.
Next one was the ex-Runaways and 80’s hard rock queen Lita Ford who I personally never had the chance to see before that night, I was excited for the opportunity to presence the music of such hard rock legend, of course she showed up with her classic BC Rich Morice in her hands and without wasting any time she showed the audience why she is one of the most talented guitar players of our time, as she made that BC Rich guitar scream hard rock riffs from the very beginning of their set. Her show was a mix of new and old songs that captivated the audience and brought out memories of past glories and lost loves.
Lita Ford was not only huge as part of the legendary band The Runaways, but she was also quite influential during the 80’s golden era of hard rock and metal in LA as she was one of the few women that found success in metal at the time the genre was an exclusive boys club. I had the pleasure of listening some of the classic songs that she wrote at the time including (If I Close My Eyes Forever and Kiss Me Deadly), and even a live version of Cherry Bomb to which she invited Lzzy Hale and Dorothy to share the stage with her for this Runaways’ classi song. The feeling of listening the hits that paved her career live was unreal. During the show, she stopped for a minute to talk about her relationship with Lemmy, and to express how much he meant to her, as the crowd exploded in claps and cheers, it was a beautiful seeing Lita honoring Lemmy‘s memory.
Seeing Lita Ford live wasn’t only a walk down memory lane to an important chapter of hard rock and metal, but it was an unique way to experience her guitar playing live as her skills as a guitar player are still exquisite as her voice and her music.
Halestorm was next, finally I was going to be able to see a complete set by them as over the summer I had the chance to catch a little bit of their set at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods awards in London and part of their set at Hellfest in France, which both were amazing sets, but because of the dynamics of both events I didn’t have a chance to fully appreciate their shows at the time.
Let’s start with how powerful Lzzy Hale‘s voice and charisma are live, she manages to pour parts of her soul in every song, her vocal performance reminded me to Joe Duplanter of Gojira who I saw the week before delivering an amazing set at the same venue, and who also delivered a passionate vocal work. Now, Lzzy Hale‘s guitar playing was another feature that makes Halestorm an amazing live band, that with simple hard rock delivers a powerful wave of angst and rebellion to the crowd in front of them.
Halestorm live is the modern equivalence of seeing a Skid Row meets Vixen meets Runaways type of band, but with a more modern and catchy sound and without the over the top attitude factor. Their live show is the pure essence of hard rock that draws the contemporary audience, but that is inclusive enough for older audiences to enjoy, and in part is why I think this package is so successful. You get a young band like Dorothy opening with their blues infuse hard rock, then the classic touch of Lita Ford‘s music, and you close the night with the modern hard rock of Halestorm. Definitely a great show by three incredible and powerful live bands.
Halestorm / Lita Ford / Dorothy Fall 2016 North American Tour
10/6 — Dallas, Texas — Gas Monkey Live!
10/8 — Colorado Springs, Colo. — Pikes Peak Center
10/9 — Salt Lake City, Utah — The Complex
10/11 — Tempe, Ariz. — Marquee
10/12 — San Diego, Calif. — House of Blues
10/14 — Reno, Nev. — Silver Legacy Casino
10/15 — Sacramento, Calif. — Ace of Spades
10/17 — Spokane, Wash. — Knitting Factory
10/18 — Calgary, Alberta — MacEwan Hall
10/19 — Edmonton, Alberta — Winspear Centre / Emmax Hall
10/21 — Billings, Mont. — Shrine Auditorium
10/22 — Minot, N.D. — State Fair Center
10/23 — Duluth, Minn. — Pioneer Hall
10/25 — Kalamazoo, Mich. — State Theatre
10/26 — Toronto, Ontario — Phoenix Theatre
10/28 — Montreal, Quebec — Metropolis