7 hours ago

Pick up anything good this year’s #RecordStoreDay?

17 hours ago

Just announced! We're bringing the Paranormal Tour to two new cities this October.

10/26 - Pittsburgh, PA (Stage AE)
Info: https://bit.ly/2qPo7Fb

10/29 - Grand Rapids, MI (DeVos Place and DeVos Performance Hall, Grand Rapids Michigan)
Info: https://bit.ly/2F3DezR

Tickets go on sale this Friday ... See more

Alice Cooper review: Adoring fans treated to classics at Thebarton Theatre

Alice Cooper Performs Dwight Fry on tour, 2017. Photo courtesy CerealKyler Photography

THERE is only one man who can combine a ballerina, a guillotine, multiple costume changes and a flagrant disregard for knife safety and turn it all into a mesmerising stage show.

That’s right, Alice Cooper and co trundled into Thebarton Theatre on Thursday evening, along with at least three semi trailers full of stage props and pyrotechnics, set to blow the minds of fans both young and old.

Along for the ride on the nation spanning “A Night with Alice Cooper” tour is original Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley who warmed up the appreciative crowd with a 50 minute opening set.

Frehley and his band look and play the part of rockstars pulled straight from the hey day of glam rock and from the very beginning engage with the audience.

The guitar pick budget alone would be staggering for the Frehley band who litter the front row with the plastic triangles like they were so much confetti.

Tearing through a tight set of Kiss hits like “Rocket Ride”, “Strange Ways” and “New York Groove” the original Space Ace cuts an imposing figure on stage and is backed up by a talented ensemble.

Frehley finished the set in style, launching into a lengthy solo on a guitar which spewed smoke onto the stage, before non chalantly changing guitars and continuing to wail as the audience sat in largely awed silence.

Before we continue to the main act let us acknowledge the ravages of time: in 2018 the band Alice Cooper will have been around for 50 years and the bands quintessential song of teenage rebellion “School’s Out For Summer” will turn 46.

For a man only months away from his 70th birthday, Vincent Furnier, known to the world as Alice Cooper, is as sprightly as a man half his age and takes his stage craft seriously.

He has assembled around him an ensemble which is world class and most importantly, genuinely look like they are having fun playing alongside each other.

The three guitarists, Tommy Henriksen, Ryan Roxie and Nita Strauss, alongside bassist Chuck Garric and drummer Glen Sobel round out the well coordinated and charismatic touring band.

Alice Cooper pioneered the shock rock genre and from the moment the curtain falls and the first creeping chords of “Brutal Planet” begin, the audience is taken on a ride through a fun house of horror tropes.

The stage is covered with creepy dolls and clown masks with Sobel perched high above on an enormous drum kit.

Making his way through classics “No More Mr Nice Guy” and “Under My Wheels”, the set list hits songs throughout Alice Cooper’s back catalogue.

Throughout the songs Alice Cooper changes costumes numerous times, waves a cash skewered rapier over the front rows, plays with knives and swords and gets electrocuted.

Crowd favorites “Poison”, “Feed My Frankenstein” and “Only Women Bleed” become full throated singalongs with the audience.

Guitarist Nita Strauss, who replaced Adelaide’s own Orianthi in touring band line up, and Sobel are both given free reign on lengthy solo’s with Sobel’s drawing rabid praise from the crowd.

Somewhere along the way a ballerina appears on stage for a brief interlude of interpretive dance and Alice Cooper is placed in a straight jacket and decapitated with a guillotine, but really, all of this was to be expected with a live show of this caliber.

For an encore the band performs “Schools out for Summer” complete with singalong and brief lapse into Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall”.

As inflatable balls drop from the ceiling Alice Cooper swings with care and abandon with a katana, popping the balls, before sticking the blade point down into the stage.

Five decades have done little to slow Alice Cooper down.

The stage show is scripted and dramatic and the man behind the mask himself is the consummate showman.

A day will come in the future when Alice Cooper hangs up his top hat and tails, a day the make up removal industry is no doubt dreading, and calls an end to extensive touring.

Until then the best advice is to catch Alice Cooper whenever and however you can because it is a live show like no other.


2 comments to Alice Cooper review: Adoring fans treated to classics at Thebarton Theatre

  • Tom manken

    Love Alice saw many shows. Love it to death at the Fillmore. with black sabbath in the Bronx. schools out in jersey city and many shows since the drum solo is old I love the dead without Alice singing is also lame. How about a concert where Alice sings some REALY deep cuts and leave out most songs that he has played continuously for a million years I been seeing these songs performed many many times and would love to see a show with Alice just singing. Or how about the original band getting together to preform some early albums in their entirely start to finish. Imagine
    J schools out or killer done again

  • Tim Aebi

    Sounds like it was fantastic – but I’m not surprised – I’ve yet to see a show that didn’t deliver (and rock the joint to the foundation). Just hoping for some Bay Area dates! Master – help me out here!Gots to see ALICE!