ALTER BRIDGE | LIVE REVIEW
Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, Mon 28 Nov
What a night! What a lineup! What a show! I’m sure that near enough six or seven thousand people woke up with their ears still ringing after the masterclass they witnessed on Monday night at the Motorpoint Arena. American rockers Alter Bridge, on their first UK tour in three years, made no bones about it this time around and brought three heavy-hitting support bands with them for the ride.
New Zealanders Like A Storm kicked off the evening with a bang before French heavy metallers Gojira tore the roof down with their set, including some new tracks off latest album Magma. Last of the support acts were Danish band Volbeat: an absolute class act with great crowd interaction and a great rendition of lead singer Michael Poulsen’s tribute to Johnny Cash, Sad Man’s Tongue. There was even a bonus appearance from Napalm Death screamer Barney Greenway.
On to the main men of the evening. Accompanied by a big screen and a lot more production than in the past, Scott Phillips takes a pew at his drumkit, followed quickly by bass player Brian Marshall, lead guitarist-extraordinaire Mark Tremonti and front man Myles Kennedy. In trademark fashion, the band absolutely smash through the opening few songs without pretty much coming up for air. New track The Writing’s On The Wall gets the honour of set opener; veteran track Come To Life follows with belter Addicted To Pain and the hard hitting Poison In Your Veins.
A slight downchange in gear for Ghost Of Days Gone By is greeted with roars of approval, while the flamenco influences of Cry Of Achilles echo out around the room, much to the pleasure of those in the crowd. Farther Than The Sun is sandwiched by fantastic newbies The Other Side and My Champion, before Tremonti takes over lead vocals effortlessly for Waters Rising.
Kennedy is centre stage on his lonesome for a beautiful acoustic version of Watch Over You, the crowd in attendance in great voice too. Smash-and-grab at its best for Isolation before what is perhaps Alter Bridge’s most iconic song, Blackbird, rings out – along with an intro from the Beatles song of the same name.
Metalingus, a familiar song for WWE fans, and Open Your Eyes finish off the main set, before the band take a swift break before the encore. The political standpoint of new track Show Me A Leader is clear as day before regular set finisher Rise Today send a full house home with smiles beaming across their faces.
An unbelievable performance from a band that seem to go effortlessly from strength to strength, the set was also recorded for a live CD – definitely one for fans to keep an eye out for.
words OWEN SCOURFIELD photos GARETH BULL