When I bought the tickets to this show, I remember thinking “we better not be knee deep in slushy snow for this one.” The weather Gods were shining on us though as Boy Child drove FB Son and I towards Glasgow. With the sun setting behind us we headed off to the SEC Centre (former SECC).
We had a date with a “cat in a hat” and some conspirators and, of course, Myles Kennedy. Yes, we were headed to the SEC to see Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators.
It must be something about the SEC – my second visit there in three months and the second time my chaperones ditched me as soon as we got there! Their loss!
After a chilly hour or so queuing outside, we were finally allowed indoors. (SEC- you could have let has queue indoors down the length of the concourse. Rock fans don’t bite and have little interest in the cheerleaders that were charging about!)
Most of the queue headed stage right (Slash side) but I headed left of centre (Conspirators side). Centre front was already pretty packed but I found a wee spot to the left just about on the rail and safely among “AB family.” (Ladies, it was fabulous to see you again)
There was only one support act on the bill and at seven thirty prompt Phil Campbell (of Motorhead fame) and the Bastard Sons (yes, three of the band really are Phil’s sons) took to the stage.
These Welshmen had a lot of fans in the rapidly growing crowd or perhaps it was a lot of Motorhead fans. Either way, Glasgow gave the band a huge welcome and embraced their forty-five-minute set whole heartedly.
Vocalist Neil Starr did a sterling job out front and swiftly won over the Scottish crowd. His energetic delivery was impressive. (One wardrobe suggestion, Neil. Buy a belt!)
It’s virtually impossible to disassociate this band from their Motorhead heritage. The influences are audible in their own material and they almost raised the roof with their cover of Born To Raise Hell.
Phil Campbell himself quietly presided over things but did address the fans once to say that the next song was in memory of the late members of Motorhead – a rousing cover of Hawkwind’s Silver Machine.
There was only one song that could follow that – Ace of Spades!
The band finished on one of their own compositions High Rule and left the stage with their heads held high.
At eight thirty, the houselights dimmed and amid a sea of roaming blue spotlights, Slash, Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators took to the stage amid a deafening roar from the large Scottish crowd.
They opened their twenty-two-song set with Call Of The Wild from the current album Living The Dream then swiftly followed that with two of my personal favourites Halo and Standing In The Sun. Awesome start to this two hour plus set.
Far to my right, Slash was busy being Slash with his die-hard fans hanging on his every note. Trust me, there were plenty to hang on!
Centre stage, Myles Kennedy looked far more self-assured in his role of “guitar-less frontman” compared to the last tour in 2014. This was the third time I’ve had the pleasure of seeing this line up and it was a joy to see them al relaxed and having fun on stage.
In front of where I was standing, Frank Sidoris was holding his own against “the boss” under that mass of tumbling hair of his. Love it! The baby of the band, he just quietly gets on with the job.
Possibly the biggest presence on stage is the band’s bassist Todd “Dammit” Kerns. The camaraderie between him and Myles is clear to see but it was great to see him interact more with Slash himself.
One of the highlights of the night was Serve You Right, also from Living The Dream. (The third of seven songs on the set from the latest album)
Mid-set Myles stepped off stage to allow Todd Kerns to take over the vocal chores for a couple of songs. The two contrast and complement each other beautifully. Todd did a stunning job of We’re All Gonna Die then, with another dedication to the late great Lemmy, sang his heart out on Dr Alibi.
When Myles returned to the stage, they moved into the second half of the show with Lost Inside The Girl. Love that one! So soulful and sultry.
One of the highlights of the night for me was By The Sword. I could listen to Myles sing this one on repeat all night. (OK, I’ll be honest, I could listen to Myles sing most things all night but I do genuinely love this one).
The only Guns N Rose song on the set was the mighty Nightrain and it proved to be a popular choice with the passionate Scottish fans.
The ever-beautiful ballad, the first song Myles and Slash collaborated on, Starlight followed. Simply divine!
You’re A Lie followed then World On Fire complete with some extended solos rounded off the main body of the set.
“Extended solos” were perhaps a point of debate among the fans present. Personally, I feel if you go to a Slash show you have to expect multiple lengthy guitar solos that do all start to sound quite similar after a while. If you think you’re going to hear anything different then you are kidding yourself on. It was an absolute delight to see Myles getting to play a little more this time round. At the risk of incurring the wrath of legions of Slash fanatics, in my humble opinion, Mr Kennedy is the more talented musician between them. There…. I’ve said it!
Myles also displayed some “hidden talents” as he accompanied Brent Fits on drums! Suspect he needs a few more lessons here though…LOL
I have to wonder how many fans in the crowd were focussed on the drumkit t at that point rather than on the musician in the spotlight……
The band returned to the stage a few brief moments after leaving it, and brought the night to a close with a two-song encore of Avalon, from World On Fire and the ever-popular Anastasia. It was a sheer delight to watch Myles playing so passionately during this finale, clearly lost in the music and Living The Dream.
And just like that, two and a quarter hours had passed in a flash.
What a show! Here’s hoping it’s not another three plus years until these guys return to Glasgow.