Thursday, August 21, 2008

Crue Fest 8/20/08 Blossom Center - Cleveland

To say I was excited about this show is an understatement. If you haven't figured it out by now, Motley Crue is my all time, most favorite band ever. As much as I love them, I am also overly critical of them. And since all of them have disappointed me at one point in time, either separately or collectively, I was praying to the powers that be that they wouldn't disappointment me during this show.

Trapt got the evening started...slowly. I'll admit, I'm not a Trapt fan, so I wasn't really expecting much from them, and they certainly didn't deliver much. Sure, they sounded good and looked good, but the crowd didn't seem into them at all. Maybe it was because they went on so early? They only had a half hour to fill, so maybe it's just hard to get the crowd pumped in such a short amount of time. Their performance didn't capture me or keep my attention at all.

Next up was Sixx AM. I am a huge Sixx AM fan, so I was super excited to finally get to see them live. For a band who hasn't really been together all that long, they performed really well together and sounded great. They opened the set with Pray for Me, which finally got the audience off their asses and rockin'. During the second song, James Michael's mic cut out and you couldn't hear him for at least a good minute. The problem was fixed quickly, and there were no other problems for the rest of the set. James' voice sounded great, although he did sing some parts lower, and DJ Ashba really worked the crowd. The drummer, Tony,who also plays for Papa Roach, is phenomenal. I could have sat there all night and watched him work those drums, but I had bigger and better people to watch...specifically Nikki Sixx, who looked smokin' hot. He wasn't as active as I was hoping and mostly just stayed on his side of the stage (which sucked for me because my seats weren't on his side), but I suppose he was probably just saving up his energy for the Crue set. Did I mention how amazingly f-ing hot Nikki Sixx is? Geezus! After their set, James Michael and DJ Ashba actually went out and faced the crowds. They talked, signed autographs and took pictures with just about everyone. Lucky for us, my friend Dee and I decided to take a potty brake at the same time and were able to squeeze our way through the crowd for some face time with these two gentleman.

Papa Roach was third in line. I've never been a super huge fan of Papa Roach. I dig some of their songs, but I don't own any of their albums. However, once I saw them live, I was hooked. I know I've said it in a previous post, but these guys put on one hell of a live show. Jacoby is full throttle throughout the entire set, and has been for every Papa Roach show I've ever seen. It makes me respect them that much more because I've seen them when they first started out up until now, and they've never slowed down. Papa Roach is a huge crowd favorite, and I totally understand why: they're f-ing great.

After watching Papa Roach, Buckcherry had some pretty big shoes to fill. This was my first experience seeing Buckcherry live, and I was definitely excited about the opportunity. Although I thought the overall sound was questionable at times, Buckcherry themselves put on a good f-ing show. Like Papa Roach, they were 110% throughout their entire performance and really got the crowd going. The only real problem I had, if you could call it that, was being distracted by how low Josh Todd's pants were hanging on him. Dear god! He's smokin' hot as it is, and then he wears some super low rider pants...swoon. At times, it made it difficult to concentrate on the music. Sorry folks, I'm a girl and hot, tattooed rock stars turn me on. Did I happen to tell you that Nikki Sixx is f-ing beautiful?

Finally...Motley Crue stormed the stage. My heart was racing because I was so freaking happy to finally see them again. They started the show off with Kickstart My Heart, and from his very first note, Vince Neil sounded like complete horse shit. There was lots of mumbling and skipping of words, but I didn't let it get me down. The rest of the band sounded great, so I just tried to stay positive. There were lots of lights and pyro, and the Los Angeles backdrop was a nice touch. The video screens showed random shots of the band performing...and some random porn. It's certainly not a kid friendly show, but when has a Motley Crue show ever been kid friendly?

One of the first things to catch my eye, aside from the hotness that is Nikki Sixx, was Tommy Lee's enormous...drums. I suppose that man doesn't have anything that's small, does he?

I was happy to see that Mick Mars was actually moving around a little bit. When I saw him on the Carnival of Sins tour, I was convinced that he was attached to strings and being moved by a puppeteer. Not the case last night. Although he's restricted to movement for obvious reasons, he did still manage to rock like the Mick Mars I know and love. However, I did hear one mistake during Dr. Feelgood. When I heard it, I was wondering if it was just me, but after the show, it was confirmed that Mick did indeed mess up.

My hopes began to falter when Motley Crue started Shout at the Devil. Of course when I heard the opening chords, I went ape shit...until Vince started singing. He was so bad, I honestly began to wonder if they were actually playing Shout at the Devil at all. Then the chorus came in, and I was reassured that they were indeed playing Shout at the Devil. Let me tell you, it was a frightening couple of minutes of self doubt. Then I just looked at Nikki Sixx and a calm fell over me. Nikki also did a lot more running around on the stage, which made this girl very happy.

There were a couple of parts of the show that I honestly could have done without. First is the angel who comes out to give Vince his guitar before they play Don't Go Away Mad. Is it really necessary for her to make out with Vince when she gives him his guitar? Yeah, she was hot and the crowd went crazy, and I suppose that's why they did it, but for me it was a little much. The second part that I could do without is Tommy's infamous titty cam. Yeah, I know. Men love titties, and what's a Motley Crue show without titties? But I guess I'm just over it. My friend Amy made a good point about the titty cam: In the time that Tommy wastes with the titty cam, they could have played one or two more songs. I'll take a couple extra Crue songs over some saggy titties any day.

They played 13 songs during their hour and a half set, but it just wasn't enough for me. I can never get enough of them. But with Vince's stamina becoming shittier and shittier and Mick Mars not being able to tolerate much more than an hour and a half of standing and moving, I really can't complain. I will complain that they only played one song for their encore: Home Sweet Home. Now, this is one of my all time favorite songs of ever and hearing it live last night gave me chills and watery eyes, but I would have liked to have heard at least one more song for the encore.
This Motley Crue performance was definitely 200% better than the last time I saw them with Aerosmith, but for me it wasn't their best performance. So far, nothing has been able to top the Carnival of Sins tour. It was fantastic to see my boys live though. They did rock my ass off, and I had a freaking blast. There is nothing better than a Motley Crue show. For me, it brings back SO many memories and really makes me feel like a kid again. It's a great feeling, and Motley Crue is one of the very few bands that can do that for me.

NOTE: Thanks to my friends Dee & Sarge. After the show, we were hanging out with everyone by the buses, and I did actually see Nikki Sixx walk off his tour bus. Seriously, I have some of the best Nikki Sixx radar in the world. I spotted him almost immediately, and the whole world stopped around me. People were talking to me, and I wasn't even paying attention because I was so zoned in on Nikki. It was pretty funny. Anyway, if it wasn't for Dee, I would have had to go to the show by myself. And if it wasn't for Sarge, I wouldn't have been backstage at all. Thanks! :)

PS - Nikki Sixx is the finest specimen of a human being to ever exist.


Sparky said...

Too bad Vince was having an off night. When they were here in St. Louis in July, he did his usual skipping of words, but for the most part, I was pretty happy with the show. Tommy didn't get to do the titty cam - which I guess was thanks to our uber-conservative lawmakers in MO - and he made sure to come out and tell everyone to protest. So, I didn't have to endure that, because hell yeah, they could have played another song during that!

I didn't get the whole angel thing either, but it's Motley and the crowd went nuts for it. I only wish I could have been closer to really go crazy for the rest of the show.

And yeah, Nikki is HOT, HOT, HOT. Smokin'. That man is pure heaven.

I didn't see Carnival of Sins or the Aerosmith tour - so I only have the old days to fall back on. Nothing can compare to that!

I just downloaded the latest Crue songs for Rockband and played them tonight - that's probably the closest I'll ever get to the boys!

Hell On High Heels said...

Let me tell you how jealous I am that you got to see them back in the day! Damn...I could seriously kick my parents' asses for not letting me go with my brother to see them during the Theater of Pain tour. I guess I was only in 2nd grade, but still! ;)

Jay Amabile said...

great review. i posted mine also. You're right about the titty cam...alot of ginormous fat women like to show their ugly saggy boobs. And I could've used some TOO FAST FOR LOVE...that shoulda been on the setlist. Nice Review! I guess you probably hate me for getting to meet Nikki.

Jay Amabile said...

yeah i actually got to meet Nikki back at a Brides of Destruction show in 03 or 04. I have the pic on my myspace except it came out all blurry! dammit. I also have a pic on there where i dressed up as him. I thought it was funny how we had similar thoughts on the papa roach performance! They were awesome.

Sparky said...

Yikes - 2nd grade?! I was the tender age of 15, I think. I'll never forget it - I went with my then boyfriend (who, by the way turned out to be the man I ended up marrying!) and his brother and my best friend. A Japanese band called Loudness opened for them. My future husband's brother was the only one who had a license, so he drove us all to the show. We had to endure Rush in the stereo on the way there and back - but hey, I got to see the Crue! Came home with a contact high! Somewhere in my video collection is a bootleg copy of the concert - terrible, of course, but at least I can say I was there!

The RIpple Effect said...

Great article, great pictures and sounds like you had a great time. I was just curious what your thoughts were on the Saints of the Underground CD, the new band with members of Warrant, Ratt and Alice Cooper?

The Ripple Effect