ALICE PREVIEWS NEW ALBUM AT LIVE LISTENING PARTY IN LONDON

SOURCE:  sickthingsuk.co.uk

Last night was the official ‘Paranormal’ album launch which took place at the ‘hidden masonic lodge’ in the  Andaz Hotel, London, which was a cool setting for the event, and has an interesting back story. The very plush hotel is built on the site of the old Bedlam hospital for the insane and was only discovered relatively recently during construction work, having been forgotten about for years. You can read a little history and see some pics here to give you an idea. Chairs were arranged in the center of the room with press folders for everyone including a welcome letter, a sheet of European tour dates, and a signed photo of the album cover.

[Warning: Possible spoilers below]

The evening began with a brief intro from our hosts from earMusic before they proceeded to play selected tracks from the forthcoming ‘Paranormal’ record. The sound system wasn’t great to be honest, and while good enough to get a feel for some of the songs it wouldn’t really be fair to completely judge things from just this single playback. Also bare in mind these are my personal first impressions and not meant to be a proper review of the record.
They began with the title track, ‘Paranormal’, which brings to mind early ‘The Who’. It sounded a little disjointed on first listen but I’m sure when we get to hear it properly it will all come together better. Next up was ‘Dead Flies’ which has a Hendrix feel/groove along the lines of maybe ‘Fire’ or ‘Crosstown Traffic’. “It’s all Lies, We’re Dead Flies”. They then skipped ahead to ‘Fallen In Love (And I Can’t Get Up) which has Billy Gibbons all over it, sounding not unlike Alice singing on a real ZZ Top track, with that familiar blues swagger. I also think I heard a few old song references including ‘Billion Dollar Babies’ and Desperado’ in the lyrics.
By now it was becoming clear what Alice meant when a few months back he referred to the album having a “70s feel”. He didn`t really mean an Alice Cooper 70s feel, but more a general 70s rock feel, and I think comparing it to ‘Killer’ was a bit of a red herring!
‘Private Public Breakdown’ was next up and has more of an 80s big rock feel to it. Kiss (around the ‘Lick It Up’ period) was my first thoughts. ‘Holy Water’ though has another change of pace, with an almost jazzy groove (more ‘Blue Turk’ then ‘Last Man On Earth’) including horns, and what felt like a LOT of lyrics which could have had a duel meaning, both telling a story and having some religious undertones as well, but as with all these songs it really would need to be heard properly to fairly judge. This was probably the one that sounded most interesting up to that point, and I wrote “best???” in my hastily scribbled notes. That was until they followed it up with ‘The Sound Of A’. This sounds like the real winner on the album. Very Pink Floydian and maybe the longest track on the album, allowing the song to build naturally which is something I think has too often been missing on recent material. This could be a future classic and I can’t wait to hear it properly.
Finally, we got to hear one of the two new original Alice Cooper band songs, ‘Genuine American Girl’, which I think Alice later mentioned was a Neal Smith song. It starts with Neal laying down a drum beat before heading off into a kinda Beach Boys/Surf groove. If you are hoping for something that actually sounds like 70s Alice Cooper this isn’t really it, but it’s a cool number if not a classic. There’s some nice duel guitar playing which I think I heard is Michael Bruce and Nick Didkovsky of the ‘Pretties For You NYC band. There’s also a nice Mae West quote in there somewhere.
So that was the end of the playback. All in all most of the songs sounded promising with a couple of obvious stand outs, but as I say, I don’t really feel I could call it based on just this first hearing. I’m looking forward to hearing everything properly.

Playback over, it was time for Alice to make his appearance at the back of the room, making his way down to the front while marvelling at the decor, and promptly tripping up, landing face first on the stone floor! At first I thought he was joking around but no it was for real. Luckily he seemed okay and made his way to the large ‘throne’ at the front of the room. Amusingly, if you look at the photos you’ll see some latin writing above the chair which we were told actually translates as ‘Very Big Chair’! Who said secret societies didn’t have a sense of humour!
There followed a brief Q and A with Alice, most of which to be honest readers here will have heard before, but Alice is always a great interview so it’s easy to just enjoy it. They covered a little background on the album recording, the guests, and the November UK shows with Dennis, Michael and Neal, confirming the basic setup will be the same as the recent Nashville reunion. Alice also took a few minutes out, unprompted, to mention the sadly missed Glen Buxton, praising him as a truly unique talent and character who he still misses to this day. The affection for his fallen friend was clear even after all these years.
A mention that the interviewer had been with Pink Floyds’ David Gilmour earlier in the day (can I have his job!!) who had told him to say “hi” to Alice saying they went “way back” prompted the old Pink Floyd stories about the band with Syd Barrett staying with the original band for a few days back in the late sixties. All very cool.
After a few more questions from the assembled audience of radio and magazine journos everything wrapped up with photos and autographs for those who wanted them before Alice and Sheryl headed off, hand in hand, to the next interview or event he was probably late for!
All in all it was a very enjoyable evening, and I extend my thanks to Toby for the invite, and the lovely people at earMusic for being such friendly hosts and making me feel so welcome at their event. Now I just need the real album even more!

Phew, well with all that written up I should also mention Alice’s was up and about again first thing this morning, appearing on ‘The Chris Evans Breakfast Show’ again on BBC Radio 2, this time in person along with various other guests including Steve Winwood who plays a few songs live in the studio. This interview was much more disjointed then yesterdays ones, being that Alice was just one of four or more guests on air at the same time, but you can listen again now on the Radio 2 site.

Alice Cooper Webchat – Your questions answered on pranks, makeup remover and Bowie

SOURCE:  The Guardian

You can re-read Alice’s entire LIVE webchat with The Guardian HERE

Check out this excerpt!

Neville63 asks:

Hi Alice, I would like to know if there was any fun rivalry between you and David Bowie when you both were the top of the glam scene and did you go to see each others shows?

Alice Cooper responds:  “David Bowie used to come to our show when he was David Jones. He’d bring his band, the Spiders from Mars, and say “watch this”. Everybody pushed everybody which was good. People wanted there to be an animosity between Bowie and I, but there never was. He created characters, I created Alice, and we both wrote from our character’s point of view. We had dinner two or three times. I think there was a nice artistic push – when we heard each other’s albums we went “Oh, I see where you’re doing with this”. Rock is the most theatrical music in the world, so why not bring it alive on stage.

For me, all of my big brothers and sisters were characters that were bigger than life. Hendrix, Joplin … they died young. Because they tried to be their character off stage. I realised I couldn’t be Alice all the time because he was too theatrical. Pretty soon your character will kill you. I didn’t want to go out on the street with a snake around my neck! That character doesn’t belong in a bank! They only belong on stage. I didn’t want him to be in daily life. As soon as the curtain came down, I wasn’t him anymore.

Even to this day I can co-exist with Alice. I can play him onstage. I look forward to playing Alice, I can’t wait. But I know that pretty soon I will be off stage too. He never talks to the audience if you notice – that would make him more human. He’s an arrogant villain. I leave him where he belongs.

There were two Alices – the Alice when I was drinking, who was society’s whipping boy. He represented all the disenfranchised. The artistic kids, the gay kids, the kids who were too weird to be with other kids. They all flocked to Alice. Because he was the outsider, and got hung, and beheaded. When I got sober I realised that Alice was gone. This new Alice was going to be an arrogant villain. And he would look down on the audience, and have total control over the audience. That’s the way people love to see him now – he comes out mad and angry and dangerous. But I like him being vulnerable to silliness too. If you don’t have humour and horror together, you’re missing out on stuff.”

REVIEW: Alice Cooper creeped out Airway Heights in all the best ways on Sunday night

SOURCE:  inlander.com
Posted By 

Alice Cooper headlined this season’s first outdoor summer concert at Northern Quest on Sunday night. Photo by Dan Nailen

I’m not going to say that Alice Cooper made a deal with the devil to still be so spry and rocking at 69 years old — as we all know by now, the man’s an avowed Christian — but there’s something unnatural about how much raucous fun the man still has on stage, nearly 50 years after first hitting the public eye.

Sunday night, Cooper kicked off Northern Quest’s Outdoor Summer Concerts series with a setlist that leaned hard on his ’70s-era classics like Welcome to My Nightmare and Billion Dollar Babies. In the process, he showed why he’s considered a garage-rock pioneer, while still offering up the theatrics one has come to expect from an Alice Cooper show.

A live boa constrictor for “Welcome to My Nightmare.” A Frankenstein monster for “Feed My Frankenstein.” Alice in a straightjacket for “The Ballad of Dwight Fry.” Alice beheaded with a guillotine just before “Killer/I Love The Dead.” All the eye-candy greatest hits were there, and entertaining for sure.

I’ll admit that for years, before ever seeing Alice Cooper perform, I thought the theatrics were the ONLY reason to go to an Alice Cooper show. But that’s not the case, as he emphatically proved Sunday night with a barreling performance that touched on punk, metal, blues and Tin Pan Alley balladry over the course of about 20 songs. An Alice Cooper show is inherently musical — and much more so than many of the heavy metal bands he’s toured with since his ’80s comeback with songs like “Poison.”

That tune that came about halfway through the show after an extended guitar solo by Nita Strauss, one of three guitarists in the band (alongside Ryan Roxie and Tommy Henriksen) who collectively gave the show all the muscle any rock fan could ask for. Cooper bragged about his band’s excellence when we talked with him, and he was right; they are musically excellent and visually appealing as part of the Alice Cooper spectacle.

Cooper launched the show in a shower of sparks and the band was on fire from the jump on opener “Brutal Planet” and its follow-up of “No More Mr. Nice Guy” and “Under My Wheels.” From there, the energy rarely flagged even for ballads like “Only Women Bleed.” “Lost in America” offered a New York Dolls-style blast of garage rock, and anthems like “Billion Dollar Babies” and “I’m Eighteen” remain live favorites for good reason.

While Cooper didn’t chat a lot with the crowd, his show and the strength of his tunes combined to make him, still, a must-see. Opener Dokken was much more chatty with the early arriving audience, with founding members Don Dokken and drummer Mick Brown cracking constant jokes about their age and “misbehaving in the ’80s.”

Dokken also fought through a hot evening sun and seated, somewhat lethargic early audience to deliver a solid hour of their ’80s hits like “The Hunter,” “Dream Warriors,” “Kiss of Death,” “Breaking the Chains” and “In My Dreams.”

Alice Cooper Reunites Original Band for 2017 UK Tour


Dennis Dunaway, Michael Bruce and Neal Smith will tour UK with Alice in November 2017

On May 14th, 2017 following Alice Cooper’s customary execution via guillotine on stage at his Nashville concert, fans were treated to something rarely seen since 1973. The stage went dark and original band members, bassist Dennis Dunaway, guitarist Michael Bruce and drummer

Neal Smith reunited to perform a five song mini-set of their classic hits with Alice.

This followed the recent announcement that his forthcoming album – Paranormal, out July 28th on earMUSIC – will include two new recordings written and recorded by the original line-up (“Genuine American Girl and “You And All Of Your Friends”).

Now, Alice announces that the three members of the original Alice Cooper band will join him on tour in the UK, returning to these shores 46 years after they first shocked and enthralled us on their historic 1971 tour.

In Nashville, they were joined by current band member Ryan Roxie filling in for the late Glen Buxton on guitar. The band ripped through “I’m 18,” “No More Mr Nice Guy,” “Muscle of Love,” “Billion Dollar Babies” and then closed with “School’s Out,” bringing back current band members – drummer Glen Sobel, bassist Chuck Garric, and guitarists Nita Strauss and Tommy Henriksen for a grand finale.

Original Alice Cooper Band Reunites in Nashville, TN. Photo by Kyler Clark – CerealKyler Photography

And they enjoyed it so much that they decided to bring the show to the UK.

Alice says, “When the original band broke up in 1975, there was no bad blood. There were no lawsuits — we had just burned out the creative process. We had gone to high school together and had recorded something like five Platinum albums in a row. We were never out of sight of each other for 10 years. Everybody just went their own way. Neal, Dennis and I always stayed in touch. Mike disappeared for a while and Glen Buxton passed away in 1997, which was a big blow.

“But last year Neal called me up and said, ‘I have a couple of songs.’ I said great, bring ‘em over. Then he said Mike was stopping by, so I had them come to my house and we just worked on a few things for a week. Then Dennis called up and said, I got a couple songs. So, I thought, hey let’s do this! When you listen to the record, it just fits right in.”

The next logical step is to rekindle their friendship, doing what they do best – performing as one the greatest live rock bands in history.

Original Alice Cooper Band Reunites in Nashville, TN. Photo by Kyler Clark – CerealKyler Photography

For more information visit www.alicecooper.com

Alice Cooper, plus The Mission and The Tubes presented by AEG live in the UK, November 2017:

11th – Leeds – First Direct Arena
12th – Glasgow – The SSE Hydro
14th – Birmingham – Barclaycard Arena
15th – Manchester – Manchester Arena
16th – London – The SSE Arena, Wembley
Tickets:
General admission ticket prices*
£40.00-£47.50
*excluding VIP packages
VIP:
Alice is offering several VIP packages at
www.alicecooper.com, including meet and greet and a backstage tour.
AEG Live are offering pre-show packages, available at:

REVIEW: Mankato Free Press - Alice Cooper's a Delightful Nightmare

SOURCE – Mankato Free Press

By Trey Mewes, tmewes@mankatofreepress.com

MANKATO — Watching a performer like Alice Cooper is almost like watching a fantastic magician mesmerize the crowd.

What Cooper did onstage Friday night at Vetter Stone Amphitheater certainly felt like magic. The 69-year-old rock icon moved like he was 30 years younger. He commanded the stage effortlessly, like he was pulling a rabbit out of a hat (or stabbing a ballerina, as Cooper did at one point). And he did it all in the span of an hour and a half.

Cooper, who is touring the world throughout the rest of the year, has been a giant of rock and roll and a pioneer since the 1960s. While he may or may not have invented shock rock as a musical subgenre, there’s no denying he popularized it. He’s a forefather of hard rock hard rock and heavy metal who influenced the evolution of rock and pop concerts into theatrical spectacles.

In other words, there’s almost no way he’s going to have a bad show.

I don’t know if Cooper has off-days like the rest of us anymore; he certainly didn’t show it in Mankato. Case in point: His microphone died at one point in the middle of “Welcome to my Nightmare,” one of his hits from the 1970s. If Cooper could tell, he didn’t sell it; the crowd and his band filled in the vocals for 15 to 20 seconds while he strutted about the stage singing and waiting for the mike to kick back on.

Compare that to Metallica’s frustration at the Grammy Awards earlier this year when frontman James Hetfield’s microphone went out. Clearly different stakes, but Cooper masked his technical errors with his performance to the point where I’m not sure many people even noticed.

Even if his band had screwed up, the crowd likely wouldn’t have cared. They were on their feet practically the whole time. One man couldn’t stop raving over seeing Alice Cooper’s “Billion Dollar Babies” tour in 1973, and Cooper’s wiggly hips sent women of all ages into hysterics at different points throughout the night.

Even Cooper’s famous python seemed to love the rocker, though the snake didn’t seem particularly pleased to be onstage.

All the pageantry you’d expect was on display. Cooper changed into numerous costumes after almost every number, his band’s backgrounds changed just as rapidly, and there were gags and pyrotechnics aplenty.

Cooper whipped around crutches, canes, riding crops, rapiers filled with money, knives and more with aplomb. He tangoed with life-sized dolls and “murdered” its real-life ballerina counterpart on “Only Women Bleed.” He turned into a 20-foot tall Frankenstein’s monster on “Feed My Frankenstein” with the help of a giant gurney and a spectacular fireworks show. He broke out of a straight jacket and got his head chopped off in “The Ballad of Dwight Fry” and part of “Killer.”

Cooper even brought out a katana during the encore, “School’s Out.” I don’t know why Cooper had a katana onstage. I’m not sure how it fit with the rest of the show. It honestly looked like something I could buy from a cheap Asian goods shop in the Cities. But that doesn’t matter, because Alice Cooper wielded a katana onstage during “School’s Out” while confetti, streamers and giant balloons shot out into the crowd.

“School’s Out” was, obviously, the highlight of the night, and Cooper even threw in a dash of Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall pt. 2” for good measure.

There’s no doubt Cooper played to his core audience on Friday. On the same day he teased an upcoming album and released a new track, “Paranoiac Personality,” Cooper’s set list was predominantly made up of the ’70s tracks that made him a household name — the newest track his band played was “Woman of Mass Distraction” from 2005’s “Dirty Diamonds” record.

That doesn’t mean Coooper skimped out on the metal sound that heralded his late-’80s and ’90s comeback, however. Cooper’s set likely surprised some of his older fans with a heavier, almost industrial sound at some points.

Guitarist Nina Strauss’s impressive solo led into an incredible rendition of “Poison,” one of Cooper’s later hits and a personal favorite. Everyone in the band showed off during “Halo of Flies,” which even included a spirited, satisfying solo from drummer Glen Sobel.

Yet there was no doubt who the star was. Cooper owned the stage at Vetter Stone, and his presence made the night all the more magical.

Set list:

1. Brutal Planet

2. No More Mr. Nice Guy

3. Under My Wheels

4. Lost in America

5. Pain

6. Welcome to my Nightmare

7. Billion Dollar Babies

8. The World Needs Guts

9. Woman of Mass Distraction

10. Poison (with a guitar solo lead-in)

11. Halo of Flies

12. Feed My Frankenstein

13. Only Women Bleed

14. Escape

15. Ballad of Dwight Fry

16. Killer

17. I Love the Dead

18. I’m Eighteen

Encore

19. School’s Out (including parts of “Another Brick in the Wall pt. 2” by Pink Floyd)

Cover Art Released For New Alice Cooper Album PARANORMAL

Can’t wait for the new album “PARANORMAL” to come out! I’m excited to unveil the new album’s cover, featuring photos by Rob Fenn. The new single “PARANOIC PERSONALITY” is out on June 9th, and the full album is out July 28th! Paranormal will be released by earMUSIC as a Double CD Digipak, Double LP, a Limited Box Set, and in digital formats.

There are 12 tracks that were recorded in Nashville with my long-time collaborator Bob Ezrin and features a very special bonus CD — a mini-album consisting of three brand new songs written and recorded together with original Alice Cooper band members Dennis Dunaway, Neal Smith, Michael Bruce, alongside carefully selected live recordings.

Paranormal also features special guest appearances by U2‘s Larry Mullen Jr., ZZ Top‘s Billy Gibbons, and Deep Purple‘s Roger Glover.