The show was scheduled for 8:30 p.m. but the box office woman said that they just put that on the billboard so that they could get everyone in for an 8:45 start.
The merch table was the first stop for many fans. From an Alice Cooper Bobble head to signed DVD’s to signed posters with the slogan Vote Alice Cooper for President- Make America Sick Again, to a variety of concert t-shirts, bandanas, buttons, wristbands and caps, they were being snapped up quickly.
The atmosphere was festive and many fans were dressed up like Alice, painted faces and all.
A tape of Vincent Price was played for the intro of The Black Widow.
A huge banner with the spider eyes draped across the front of the stage stared menacingly at the audience and quickly dropped as the band hit the stage to thunderous applause.
Sparks were flying, literally, as Alice sang the saga of the Black Widow spider who devours it’s partner after mating.
The master of shock then gave us an indication of his state of mind with No More Mr. Nice Guy. Known for his theatrics and macabre lyrics, at 68 years old, the Coop proved to the audience he’s still got it in him to deliver a fine performance.
His powerhouse band were rocking hard throughout the evening. Most of his band has played together for some time already. Winnipegger Tommy Henriksen was in fine form helping out the band on guitar.
As I went through my notes of the show, I kind of broke the evening down into four acts and a musical interlude. After all Alice has always been known for his theatrics as much as his songs.
Act I was the intro to the show. Alice came out in his striped pants and dapper suit jacket The band was warming up and by the fifth song, Billion Dollar Babies, the audience was nicely warmed up as well.
Act II started off with Long Way To Go and after the tune Woman of Mass Destruction, Hollywood native, Nita Strauss, delivered a blazing guitar solo which featured a snippet of Prince’s When Doves Cry. I think the song was about her as she seemed capable of destroying anyone with that amazing tone.
The musical interlude section had Alice play conductor as he led his musicians through Halo of Flies which culminated into a drum solo accompanied by the bass.
I’ve never been a huge fan of drum solos, but what Glen Sobel was doing up there sounded pretty damn good. I was amazed at how he twirled his sticks in the air without missing a beat.
Act III was when the main theatrics started. Seems like the character Alice’s mind was deteriorating quickly as he was strapped to a table for Feed My Frankenstein. As the sparks flew once again, he was transformed into a 12 foot monster.
Then Cold Ethyl saw the demented man having a necrophiliac encounter and “making love to the refrigerator light.” The very touching Only Women Bleed had Ryan Roxie playing a beautiful electric 12 string guitar piece that just melts my heart every time.
Because his “conscience is on vacation in acute degeneration” the abuser was found Guilty and institutionalized. The Ballad of Dwight Fry saw the tables turned as a gorgeous nurse stuck her large syringe into the straight-jacketed culprit. “Sleeping don’t come very easy in a straight white vest.”
And for his crimes he was duly punished as the guillotine was wheeled onto the stage. To celebrate, the song I Love the Dead was sung.
The final and last act, Act IV featured some covers starting off with the Who’s Pinball Wizard. Alice was wheeled onto the stage on a medical gurney into “the graveyard of the Hollywood Vampires.” Jim Morrison’s tombstone appeared on the stage.
A huge banner of a tombstone was unfurled behind the drummer with David Bowie’s birth and death dates on it as the band did a smoking version of Suffragette City complete with guitar solo by Ryan Roxie.
Next up another tombstone was unfurled bearing Lemmy’s name as the band launched into Ace of Spades. Alice’s raunchy voice was well suited for this one and the way Chuck Garris shredded his bass probably has the deceased Motorhead meister not rolling in his grave but dancing in his grave. Brought back great memories of when I saw Motorhead open up for Alice in the late 80’s.
I’m Eighteen had Alice convince us that “I’m a boy but I’m a man.” Never too old to rock’n’roll.
Last song before the encore was that wonderful anthem celebrating the end of the school year. School’s Out segued into Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall.
An American flag was the backdrop for the encore which featured Elected. Very appropriate considering the Presidential election happening in the states soon. The two Presidential candidates Clinton and Trump made a special appearance on the stage where they battled it out.
The concert ended with Alice telling everyone “don’t forget to vote…for me.” Hmmmmm, wouldn’t that be interesting…Alice Cooper in the White House.
All photos by Doug Kretchmer
Vincent Price Intro
The Black Widow
No More Mr. Nice Guy
Under My Wheels
Public Animal #9
Billion Dollar Babies
Long Way to Go
The World Needs Guts
Woman of Mass Distraction
Halo of Flies
Feed My Frankenstein
Only Women Bleed
Ballad of Dwight Fry
I Love the Dead
Under the Bed
(Raise the Dead intro)
(The Who cover)
(David Bowie cover)
Ace of Spades
(w/ Pink Floyd’s “Another
Brick in the Wall”)
(with guest fighters Donald
Trump and Hillary Clinton)