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Non-Prog Concert Reviews

Chickenfoot

Live in Atlantic City, New Jersey – August 22nd, 2009

Review by Michael Ostrich

They say that the name of your band can describe the band itself. With a name like Chickenfoot, you need to expect the unexpected. With the pairing of ex-Van Halen alumns Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony along with guitar magician Joe Satriani and the backbone of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Chad Smith, do you really know what to expect? That was the buzz from the sold-out House of Blues crowd on a Saturday night in August as the band took to the stage.

The crowd did not leave disappointed. Even at age 61, Sammy Hagar, aka "The Red Rocker", can hit any note he wants, any time he wants to. His screams are legendary, and the audience ate it up every time he launched into one. Wearing his trademark red shades, Hagar and the boys played the entire album (minus one song) with precision-like accuracy. Satriani, also in his trademark shades, was flawless as he moved up and down the fretboard with ease. He did seem a bit subdued at times. Michael Anthony seemed to be having the time of his life there on bass, free of the chains that seem to have bound him for the previous 30 years. The star of the show for this reporter, however, was Chad Smith. As I'm not a RHCP fan, Smith was the wild card for me with this project. Either he could make this project soar or bring it down with crappy drumming. I shouldn't have worried; his playing almost seemed Bonhamesque. He wasn't as talkative as he was in May when the band played at the legendary Trocadero in downtown Philadelphia, and that was something I was looking forward to.

A Chickenfoot show is 90 minutes of fun, for sure, but for those of us who saw them in Philly, it....was almost.... as good...but not quite.
This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2009  Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.
 
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