33 years after the Screaming for Vengeance tour, Priest still sounds pretty rockin’ to the Newt

all crappy iPhone photos by the Newt By Steve Newton The first time I ever saw Judas Priest was at Vancouver's Pacific Coliseum on the Screaming for Vengeance tour in 1982. I remember the show well because a week or two before it I did one of my earliest heavy-metal interviews, with bass player Ian Hill. … Continue reading 33 years after the Screaming for Vengeance tour, Priest still sounds pretty rockin’ to the Newt

Judas Priest’s setlist bodes well for British Steel (and Birmingham metal) in Vancouver

By Steve Newton Tonight's the night for Lower Mainland metalheads! Well, tomorrow's the night too, I suppose. Tonight and tomorrow (October 27 and 28) legendary heavy-metal act Judas Priest plays Hard Rock Casino Vancouver for what will be its first-ever non-arena Vancouver shows with singer Rob Halford at the fore. So only about a thousand folks each … Continue reading Judas Priest’s setlist bodes well for British Steel (and Birmingham metal) in Vancouver

Judas Priest mixes it up on tour, Rob Halford says Richie Faulkner “saved” the band

By Steve Newton Judas Priest has been headlining arena concerts in Vancouver since the Screaming for Vengeance Tour back in 1982, but this time around things are different. Local headbangers will be able to see the British metal legends in the comparatively cozy confines of the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver for two shows next week. “We’ve been … Continue reading Judas Priest mixes it up on tour, Rob Halford says Richie Faulkner “saved” the band

Rob Halford says that Priest, Maiden, AC/DC, KISS, Metallica, and Slayer have all stood the test of time

By Steve Newton Back in 2015 I interviewed Rob Halford in advance of Judas Priest's doubleheader at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver. When I asked him if there were any newer metal bands that had blown him away lately the 64-year-old "metal god" went off on a bit of a tangent. "They're all over the place, … Continue reading Rob Halford says that Priest, Maiden, AC/DC, KISS, Metallica, and Slayer have all stood the test of time

Rob Halford is “content” with Judas Priest’s two-guitar lineup–but he loves what Iron Maiden does with three

By Steve Newton I interviewed Rob Halford a couple of weeks ago in advance of Judas Priest's upcoming shows at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver, and we had a pretty nice chat. We go way back, to that time he called me up to promote the Defenders of the Faith tour in '84. At one point we … Continue reading Rob Halford is “content” with Judas Priest’s two-guitar lineup–but he loves what Iron Maiden does with three

Steve Earle’s marathon Vancouver show a winner despite a-hole sighting

photos by the Newt By Steve Newton Steve Earle was his typically cool and collected self during his marathon set at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver last night, but there was one moment when his calm demeanour got left backstage. Just before his encore one overly enthusiastic fan scampered up on the empty stage to grab … Continue reading Steve Earle’s marathon Vancouver show a winner despite a-hole sighting

Steve Earle might cover Jimi Hendrix and ZZ Top in Vancouver, but either way, it’s all good

By Steve Newton Back in the day you didn't have easy access to what songs your fave touring performers might be playing when they made it to your town. I mean, even when Steve Earle played the Commodore in Vancouver 15 years ago you weren't sure he was gonna do "Copperhead Road" until you maybe heard that … Continue reading Steve Earle might cover Jimi Hendrix and ZZ Top in Vancouver, but either way, it’s all good

Metal gods Judas Priest to play first Vancouver shows with Rob Halford outside of a hockey rink

By Steve Newton I've been going to see Judas Priest play concerts at Vancouver hockey rinks since the 1982 Screaming for Vengeance tour hit the Pacific Coliseum, and, quite frankly, I'm sick of it. The acoustics are never any good, and you can never get close enough to see the sweat dripping off Glenn Tipton's fretboard unless you … Continue reading Metal gods Judas Priest to play first Vancouver shows with Rob Halford outside of a hockey rink

Whitesnake brings the power of Deep Purple to Vancouver

kevin statham photo By Steve Newton I never got to see David Coverdale sing “Burn” with Deep Purple–I wasn’t old enough to travel down to the Ontario Motor Speedway to see them coheadline California Jam with Emerson, Lake & Palmer back in ’74–so it was pretty cool to see him do it with Whitesnake at … Continue reading Whitesnake brings the power of Deep Purple to Vancouver

Whitesnake’s Purple Tour offers equal servings of Burn and Stormbringer, one bite of Come Taste the Band

By Steve Newton I was never that crazy about Whitesnake during it's mid-'80s heyday, when it went the power-ballad route with hits like "Is This Love". Sure, I enjoyed ogling Tawny Kitaen on the hood of a car as much as the next guy, but I much preferred Whitesnake in the late '70s/early '80s, when … Continue reading Whitesnake’s Purple Tour offers equal servings of Burn and Stormbringer, one bite of Come Taste the Band

Sooner or later it all gets real for Neil Young’s 26-year-old guitarist Lukas Nelson

By Steve Newton Willie Nelson celebrated his 82nd birthday on April 29, so when his son Lukas calls for an interview the next day, the first question has to be “So how was the party last night?” “It wasn’t much of a party,” he replies. “We just played poker, and a little golf.” If copious … Continue reading Sooner or later it all gets real for Neil Young’s 26-year-old guitarist Lukas Nelson

Lynyrd Skynyrd blows the motherf***ing roof off the Hard Rock with a southern-fried riff-fest for the ages

photo by Kevin Statham. All other less-impressive photos by the Newt By Steve Newton Four of the seven Lynyrd Skynyrd members pictured on the cover of the band's phenomenal first album are dead. That's unfortunate, obviously; tragic, even. But if you saw the band play last night you might be tempted to say "So what?" … Continue reading Lynyrd Skynyrd blows the motherf***ing roof off the Hard Rock with a southern-fried riff-fest for the ages

Robert Cray soars on spectacular sound at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver

photo by Kevin Statham By Steve Newton I've seen a lot of electric guitar-based concerts in the last 30 years or so. Heck, one of the main reasons I became a music journalist back in '82 was to see a lot of electric guitar-based concerts. (That, and to get free albums.) But I honestly can't recall … Continue reading Robert Cray soars on spectacular sound at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver

Lynyrd Skynyrd heads to Vancouver for a “Friday Night Special”

Southern-rock heroes Lynyrd Skynyrd have just announced a show at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver. And it's on a Friday, which is pretty close to a "Saturday Night Special." As anyone who's followed the band from its early-'70s beginnings knows, Skynyrd's story is composed of the highest highs and lowest lows. The lowest was the … Continue reading Lynyrd Skynyrd heads to Vancouver for a “Friday Night Special”

Slash, Myles Kennedy, and the Conspirators deliver the concert of a lifetime in Vancouver

photos by Jet Sutherland By Steve Newton As I write this it's been over 12 hours since Slash left the stage at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver, and my ears are still ringing loudly. It sounds like rock 'n' roll. Holy crap was that an awesome show! I've been reviewing rock gigs for nearly 35 years, and … Continue reading Slash, Myles Kennedy, and the Conspirators deliver the concert of a lifetime in Vancouver

Slash’s Vancouver gig tonight promises plenty of Guns N’ Roses–and the return of Todd “Dammit” Kerns

If the setlist from Slash's show in San Francisco two nights ago is any indication, his Vancouver fans are in for a whole lotta GN'R action tonight.During his show at the Fillmore the top-hatted guitar hero led his group the Conspirators, featuring vocalist Myles Kennedy, in no less than six Guns N' Roses numbers, including one … Continue reading Slash’s Vancouver gig tonight promises plenty of Guns N’ Roses–and the return of Todd “Dammit” Kerns

Steve Lukather’s smoking guitar rules at Ringo’s All-Starr hitfest in Vancouver

By Steve Newton Not all of the folks attending last night's Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band show at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver might have known who Steve Lukather was. I suspect a lot of them just went to see the ex-Beatle, hoping to hear him revive Fab Four memories with tunes like "Yellow … Continue reading Steve Lukather’s smoking guitar rules at Ringo’s All-Starr hitfest in Vancouver

Yngwie Malmsteen calls Ibanez guitars “a bad copy” of the Strat and says Les Pauls are “furniture”

By Steve Newton Had a nice little chat with Swedish guitar legend Yngwie Malmsteen the other day, in advance of his Guitar Gods show next Saturday (June 28) at the River Rock Show Theatre. I mentioned that the last time I saw him live was on the G3 Tour at Vancouver's Orpheum Theatre in 2003 or … Continue reading Yngwie Malmsteen calls Ibanez guitars “a bad copy” of the Strat and says Les Pauls are “furniture”

Steve Miller’s ’70s blues-rock tunes can still pack the joint

  photos by the newt During his sold-out gig at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver last night, Steve Miller talked about how he moved to Chicago as a young man and learned all he could about the blues jamming with the likes of Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, and Buddy Guy. That love of the blues came … Continue reading Steve Miller’s ’70s blues-rock tunes can still pack the joint

Anti-fragile Bachman Turner puts it into overdrive this spring

Less than two weeks ago, Universal Music Canada announced that it would be releasing a remastered 40th-anniversary edition of Bachman-Turner Overdrive's best-selling album, Not Fragile, on March 18. That was great news for anyone who was a teenager back in '74, when BTO was battling it out with the likes of Thin Lizzy, Foghat, and Blue Oyster Cult for time on … Continue reading Anti-fragile Bachman Turner puts it into overdrive this spring

Steve Miller will keep on rockin’ you at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver

The Hard Rock Casino Vancouver announced today that it's bringing the Steve Miller Band to town on April 12, which is good news for anyone with a hankering for old-school guitar-rock. According to the most recent setlist available, Miller is concentrating on the two albums that pretty well ruled rock radio back in the day: Fly Like an … Continue reading Steve Miller will keep on rockin’ you at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver

Ringo Starr’s All-Starr Band to perform at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver

Maybe you saw him at the Grammy's the other night, performing his old hit "Photograph" and then playing drums behind Paul McCartney on some song that wasn't a Beatles tune. Well, now you can see him in the flesh, as legendary Fab Four drummer and all-around good guy Ringo Starr is bringing his All-Starr Band … Continue reading Ringo Starr’s All-Starr Band to perform at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver