Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Night Ranger 35 Years And A Night In Chicago cd review




On December the 2nd Frontiers Records Srl release a true celebration of a 35 year career that is still going strong today as Night Ranger show off a true party night every night on cd/dvd/blu ray with 35 Years And A Night In Chicago.

Way back in 1982 as a 16 year old while at work I was stunned as the radio played a song with a huge chorus and duelling lead guitars.

I was blown away and went off to find the classic debut album Dawn Patrol and so begins a love affair with the band that all these years later shows no sign of slowing down.

For anyone that has seen the band live know that they are a 10 legged killing machine live capable of blowing you off your feet with screaming guitars and pounding drums but as capable of taking it down and with vocalists of the quality of Jack Blades (also on bass) and Kelly Keagy (also on drums) producing songs of such breath taking emotion can have you crying your eyes out.

You hope with a live release that it captures the moment in time as it was the for the lucky ones there well this one recorded May 7, 2016 this concert at the House Of Blues in Chicago, Illinois has done just that.

I have been fortunate to see the band 4 times one way back supporting Foreigner in 1985 and the rest in the last few years and the sheer enjoyment that every band member gets from every single moment on stage is quite breath taking.Like it is their first ever show or their last they give it everything they have.

The current line up with Eric Levy on keys and backing vocals and Brad Gillis and Kerri Kelli on guitars played in the UK last year and this night captured on film shows the band on fire.

It really is hard to pick any one highlight as in my eyes it all is from start to finish.


From the opening bars of Touch Of Madness to the last note of You Can Still In Rock America its Night Ranger live unashamedly in your face with huge choruses wonderful backing vocals and duelling guitars just like it was the first time I heard them 35 years ago.

Huge congratulations to the producers who have got it so got it as the whole experience makes you feel that you was there with the crowd.

Touch Of Madness descends into a band workout with Gillis up to his usual tricks of making sounds no one has ever heard from a guitar and Keagy thrashing the hell out of his kit before the band take it down with Dawn Patrol classic Sing Me Away with it's stunning vocal melodies and Keagy who should barely be drawing breath after his drum barrage puts in a performance vocally that is stunning.

Great moment as Gillis hits the whammy bar and makes a very strange sound which Keagy ends up laughing mid vocal and says what was that!!!!

Great to see Growing Up In California and High Road in the set as it shows the band are still able to create new music that sits with the old catalogue but moves it on too.

We also get a taste of their new album due out in 2017 with a new song Night And Day which the band had only just learnt and is crushingly heavy but still plenty of duel guitars and vocally speaking too.Roll on the new album.

The band are as known for their ballads and rockers and we get the 3 huge ballads that have shaped their career with Sentimental Street,Goodbye and Sister Christian all quite stunning with Keagy's vocal melodies having the hairs on the back of my neck standing to attention.Great to see Goodbye in it's acoustic start full band end with Gillis's guitar solo off the scale.

The guitar team of Kelli and Gillis are one of the best in the business with quite stunning lead breaks and melodic duelling and at times Gillis is all over this.I have been fortunate to stand in front of the great man and see him in full flow and this with it's great production you can really hear his added melodies and breaks which set him apart from others.
Eddie's Coming Out Tonight should be shown to any young up and coming guitarist from the starting riff through the mid song solo to the ending duelling section from both and say follow that.Quite wonderful.


Both Night Ranger and Penny from Dawn Patrol are welcome additions to the set and again show the bands joy at being stage and the lets say it fun that can be had from music in the live setting.

A celebration of a 35 year career captured wonderfully and this should be at the top of everyone's Christmas wish list.

If not buy it for them anyway.






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