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IceCreamMan’s review of Unchained’s performance
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Did you ever have bad sex with someone you really weren’t into, and halfway through it, you think to yourself about getting a pizza? Then you stop the deed and proceed to break up with the person saying, “It’s not you, it’s me.”

    Well, the Dec. 3rd show at Tom ‘N Jerry’s was certainly more us than them, in regards to Unchained. Let me explain.

    Imagine if you will the scene: a Friday night in a small Pennsylvania town outside of Philadelphia. I was more than excited to see Unchained, since this time they’d be in my backyard so to speak, and I could bring people I knew.

    (Mind you, the first time I saw them they were playing in downtown New York City, on Diamond Dave’s 50th birthday bash. Granted, Folsom, PA isn’t the musical mecca that NYC is, but you would think people would be more into the show than they were).

    When you walk into the place, you quickly realize that the show area isn’t the focal attraction to the joint. There are two bars located at either end of the place, about eight televisions broadcasting boxing and basketball, and a pair of pool tables adjacent to the stage area. Needless to say, there are multiple distractions for the casual observer.

    Unfortunately, the place was packed with what seemed to be casual observers. I, as well as a handful of people from my observations, worship classic VH. However, the majority of the patrons in the house was casual in regards to the band, and seemed lost when they opened with On Fire. Things got going a bit with Panama, but for a good part of the next hour the band played a great deal of classic Van Halen, most of which only a die-hard fan would recognize. When I say that, I think if you asked 100 random people on the street to sing the chorus of Fools, how many would know it? My guess is not too many.

    Also, starting the show an hour and twenty minutes late probably didn’t endear them to too many folks.

    Please don’t get me wrong, the band knows how to rock. The set list was strong as usual. I just think they had to make the best of a bad situation, traveling over an hour to basically play for a group of 30 die-hards and about 80 others. It was tough.

    If I may offer one piece of advice to the band, I think it would be to not adhere to the set list so stringently. The lead singer alluded to that about 45 minutes into the show, taking a request from the crowd, but Fools is not a tune most people would recognize. I think the casual fan probably knows and recognizes the following as classic Van Halen:

    Hot for Teacher
    Pretty Woman
    Jamie’s Cryin’
    Somebody Get Me a Doctor
    You Really Got Me

    I guess you can make a case for some others (Dance the Night Away, etc.). What I’m trying to say is that instead of doing a sound check with Dance the Night Away, perhaps they should perform something more obscure for their sound check and open with Dance the Night Away. It’s like the opening line of a speech or a comedy routine: if people like it, they’ll listen; if not, they’ll ignore you and you have to fight an uphill battle after that, and that’s what they were doing last night.

    In my humble opinion, these guys could perform underwater with their hands tied behind their backs and still be amazing.

    “I can’t wait to feel your love tonight.” Unchained is still waiting to feel love from the folks at Tom ‘N Jerry’s. Where’s the brotherly love, Folsom?

    -- IceCreamMan

  2. #2
    THEE bassist for VH
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    someplace you're not
    That's a bummer that the bar didn't respond better. I guess it really DOES come down to us die-hards! They sound like a great band! Anybody that spreads the word is great in my books! :184:

  3. #3
    Band Technician
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Are they making plans to come to Europe ?
    If so, i volenteer to be their tour manager !
    Everybody wants some ! I want some too !



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