Live in London Blu-ray shows the Pretenders in killer form

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, MARCH 5, 2010 By Steve Newton The last time I saw the Pretenders in concert was in 2007 on a bill with the Stray Cats and ZZ Top, and they definitely held their own with the rockabilly hepcats and the bearded boogie-bluesmen. Though pushing 60, lead singer and rhythm guitarist Chrissie … Continue reading Live in London Blu-ray shows the Pretenders in killer form

30 Years Ago: the Pretenders learning to crawl in Vancouver

By Steve Newton Thirty years ago today–on February 21, 1984–the Pretenders played a sold out show at Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre. The band was touring behind one of its best albums ever, Learning to Crawl, which included such snazzy numbers as “Back on the Chain Gang”, “My City Was Gone”, and “Middle of the Road”. … Continue reading 30 Years Ago: the Pretenders learning to crawl in Vancouver

ZZ Top, the Pretenders, and Brian Setzer bring ’70s-rock magic to Vancouver

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, AUG. 29, 2007 I saw some very cool things at the big Jack FM classic-rock triple bill at GM Place last Thursday (August 23). First off, local punk-rock legend Joey “Shithead” Keithley could be seen strolling along the mezzanine, where he was accosted every 10 paces by a wide-eyed fan who … Continue reading ZZ Top, the Pretenders, and Brian Setzer bring ’70s-rock magic to Vancouver

Chrissie Hynde targets meat-eaters and lumberjacks at Pretenders’ Vancouver show

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 24, 2000 It didn’t take animal-rights activist Chrissie Hynde long to start preaching at the Orpheum last Saturday (February 19). Just a couple of songs into the Pretenders’ nearly two-hour show, she gave a nice big “Fuck you!” to everyone who wears leather or fur, or eats meat. … Continue reading Chrissie Hynde targets meat-eaters and lumberjacks at Pretenders’ Vancouver show

Album review: John Fogerty, Eye of the Zombie (1986)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 21, 1986 By Steve Newton John Fogerty found himself with a hard act to follow after 1985’s top-notch Centerfield album. While his new LP. Eye of the Zombie, is far from being a bad record, it still doesn’t contain any tracks that match Centerfield‘s title track or “The Old Man … Continue reading Album review: John Fogerty, Eye of the Zombie (1986)

Album review: John Cougar Mellencamp, Scarecrow (1985)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 8, 1985 By Steve Newton “The Authority Song” from last year’s Uh-Huh album was one of my fave rock tunes of 1984, right up there with Van Halen’s “Panama” and the Pretenders’ “Back On the Chain Gang”. But I wasn’t too crazy about the album on a whole. … Continue reading Album review: John Cougar Mellencamp, Scarecrow (1985)

My 50 fave Vancouver concerts of all time (so far)

By Steve Newton In celebration of the Georgia Straight turning 50 this year, I figured I’d offer a roundup of the 50 top Vancouver concerts I’ve reviewed while writing for the paper since 1982. Maybe you made it out to a couple yourself! Although I doubt you weaseled your way backstage at the Orpheum in ’93 to … Continue reading My 50 fave Vancouver concerts of all time (so far)

Stray Cats Live at Rockpalast finds the rockabilly revivalists at their ballsy best

By Steve Newton Maybe, like me, you were lucky enough to catch the Stray Cats when they played the Commodore back in ’82. Or perhaps you saw them when they were on that bill at GM Place in 2007 with the Pretenders and ZZ Top. But if you’re one of those sad sacks who’ve never seen the Stray … Continue reading Stray Cats Live at Rockpalast finds the rockabilly revivalists at their ballsy best

sound & vision

“Sound and Vision” was a pretty cool tune from a David Bowie album that made my Top 30 Rock Albums of 1977. It’s also a pretty cool name for this page where I’ll gather up my box set (sound) and Blu-ray (vision) reviews. I might also throw in the odd DVD and CD/vinyl reissue when … Continue reading sound & vision

Anybody got a question for ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons?

One of my all-time fave bands from the ’70s, ZZ Top, is playing Vancouver on March 22. Their albums made my personal Top 30 charts in 1971, ’72, ’73, ’75, ’76, and ’79. Sadly, they didn’t release any LPs in ’70, ’74, ’77, and ’78, not that the seventies had room for even one more shitkicker … Continue reading Anybody got a question for ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons?

ZZ Top to play first-ever Vancouver theatre show this March

I’ve been lucky enough to have seen ZZ Top a number of times over the years, the first being at the Pacific Coliseum back in 1976 or so. I think it was on the Fandango tour, but I can’t find any mention of that gig anywhere online. Anybody else see that show, before the big-beard period? Pretty … Continue reading ZZ Top to play first-ever Vancouver theatre show this March

concert reviews

So, yeah, I’ve reviewed a few shows over the years. IRON MAIDEN at Rogers Arena, Sept. 3, 2019 SONNY LANDRETH at the Rio Theatre, Aug. 24, 2019 BAND OF FRIENDS at the Fox Cabaret, Dec. 18, 2018 ROGER WATERS at Rogers Arena, Oct. 28, 2017 GUNS N’ ROSES at BC Place Stadium, Sept. 1, 2017 THE … Continue reading concert reviews

interviews

Some of my interviews, arranged alphabetically, from AC/DC to ZZ Top AC/DC Malcolm Young & Brian Johnson, 1983 AEROSMITH Joe Perry, Sept. 2010 AEROSMITH Steven Tyler, 1997 AEROSMITH Joe Perry, 1997 AEROSMITH Tom Hamilton, 1994 AEROSMITH Joe Perry, 1988 AEROSMITH Tom Hamilton, 1983 TOMMY ALDRIDGE 2001 ALICE IN CHAINS Jerry Cantrell, 1991 ALL Bill Stevenson, 1993 … Continue reading interviews

Vancouver rockers, radio hosts, and record-store owners reflect on the power of Black Sabbath

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 15, 1999 By Steve Newton Because of its brutal sound and satanic overtones, Black Sabbath was never as widely accepted as the Beatles or the Stones, but its influence among rock fans is incredibly far-reaching. We asked a few local hard-rock aficionados and musicians to divulge their fondest … Continue reading Vancouver rockers, radio hosts, and record-store owners reflect on the power of Black Sabbath