"NIGHT RANGER ROCKS THE HOUSE OF BLUES IN MYRTLE BEACH, SC |
A lot of people would probably have questioned my sanity when I decided to pick up and take a
6 hour drive from Atlanta to Myrtle Beach, SC just to see a rock band play. But anyone who has
seen these guys on this tour or heard their latest release "Neverland" (released in Japan in April,
US release date July 22nd via Sony/Legacy) could tell you exactly why one would travel that far:
they put on one the most energetic live shows around. In an industry full of alterna-rock bands
who act like they would much rather be home washing their flannel and being depressed about
being so rich than performing in front of an audience, it's refreshing to see a band get up there
and have fun (what a concept!). And you know what they say: if the band's having a good time,
the audience is going to as well.
That was definitely the case July 12th at the House Of Blues in Myrtle Beach, SC. In an age
where rock music is supposedly dead, by show time the place was packed! They kicked off
the set with the title track from the new album "Neverland" and then went into a string of hits
and album cuts from their `80's catalog ("Touch Of Madness", "Four In The Morning",
"Sing Me Away", "Rumors In The Air", "Eddie's Coming Out Tonight".) Things slowed
down a bit when keyboardist Alan Fitzgerald played a beautiful piano piece that segued
into the hit "Sentimental Street" with drummer/lead vocalist Kelly Keagy. From there the
guys went into an acoustic set (with Jeff Watson on 12 string, of course) which included
"Let Him Run", the Damn Yankees smash "High Enough" (Jack Blades' other band), and
ended with "Goodbye" with the whole band coming in electric for the outro solo
(compliments of guitarist Brad Gillis.) After this they played the soon-to-be hit single
from the new album, "Forever All Over Again" (which received great response), and
picked back up the pace with "Night Ranger" (from their first album, Dawn Patrol.)
They then went on to play "When You Close Your Eyes", the Damn Yankees hit
"Coming Of Age" and closed the set with the classic "Don't Tell Me You Love Me."
Of course they knew they couldn't leave the place alive without an encore and they
didn't disappoint, coming back with the crowd pleasers "Sister Christian" and closing
the night with "(You Can Still)Rock In America".
The show was incredible! It's refreshing to hear positive rock music again, especially
from a band with so many great songs in their repertoire (though some fans did notice
the absence of any songs from the Big Life and Man In Motion albums.) I've seen many
Night Ranger shows over the years and I'm here to tell you, they only get better with age.
Check `em out!"
- Marc A. Bryant