Scorpions and Queensryche are a Winning Pair in Vegas

Photo: Steve Rose

Photo: Steve Rose

Scorpions and Queensryche wrapped up their penultimate show at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. This residency, dubbed “Blacked Out in Vegas,” consisted of a five night run at this fantastic venue. The crowd was energetic and excited from the moment that Queensryche took that stage and that emotion carried over until the Scorpions played their last note of the night. These two bands have been touring together since last Fall and compliment each other nicely. They both have die hard fans that live and breathe on each note played or lyric sung.

Photo: Steve Rose

Photo: Steve Rose

Queensryche put on a fantastic eight song set that was filled with fan favorites like “Operation: Mindcrime,” “Jet City Woman,” and “Queen of the Reich.” Michael “Whip” Wilton’s playing was fiery and inspiring as he tilted his body back to go with the notes being bent on that familiar skull painted ESP guitar. The other members of the band were all dialed in, while singer, Todd La Torre was spot on vocally and did a great job interacting with the fans.

Following a short break, the kabuki curtain with the Scorpions Return to Forever artwork on it, dropped to the ground, and the band emerged from the fog and kicked off their eighteen song set with “Going Out With a Bang.” Throughout the night, the band played a mixture of current songs and the legendary ones that they are known for. “The Zoo” is always a good one and the band played it early in the set. This song features Matthias Jabs on the talk box and handling the lead duties on his black explorer style guitar. Rudolf Schenker and bassist, Pawel Maciwoda, patrolled the stage and played to everyone in the front row, at times pointing and smiling at selected fans who were yelling to get noticed. For a band entering it’s 51st year, they show no signs of age or slowing down. Klaus Meine still has that legendary and recognizable voice and showed his appreciation to the fans by throwing out handfuls of drumsticks to as many as he could in between musical breaks.

Both bands put on great, hard rockin’ sets and it’s obvious they each love playing these great songs to their adoring fans. These two bands only have a couple of dates left together, but both have extensive touring plans throughout the year.

Photo: Steve Rose

Photo: Steve Rose

 

Queensryche @ The Joint

Scorpions @ The Joint

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The Scorpions are Dynamite at The Forum

KlausIt’s always a great experience when I get to see a show at the Fabulous Forum. The venue has great sound, courteous employees, and attracts big name acts to play there. On Saturday night, that big act was none other than the Scorpions. The band, celebrating its 50th anniversary and the release of its newest album, Return To Forever, played to a packed Forum crowd filled with a fervor that I had not seen in a while; it speaks to the longevity and success that the Scorps have had during their time together.

From the moment the giant curtain dropped and the band took the stage, they gave their fans a high energy, high output performance. Guitarists, Rudolf Schenker and Matthias Jabs, patrolled every edge of the stageRudy and Matty, delighting fans with their signature guitar licks and a number of quality rock star poses. Throughout the night, Rudolf played the iconic Flying V shaped guitars that he is known for, while Matthias played a couple of Explorer style guitars designed by Boris Dommenget. Klaus Meine proved that he still had the vocal chops to sing all of those memorable songs like, No One Like You, The Zoo, and Rock You Like a Hurricane. The rhythm section of drummer, James Kottak and bassist, Pawel Maciwoda were tight and cohesive all night. The interactive video screens worked well with the overall stage set up and definitely added to the visual performance of the band.

A notable aspect of the show, aside from the tremendous talent of the band, was the expertly crafted set list. The mixture of songs was enough to satisfy the expectations of both the casual “radio hits” fan and those die hard, longtime fans that live for their music. I overheard a woman in her fifties talking to her friend about how the Scorpions have been her number one band since high school and she was nervous and excited for the show. I have a feeling that those similar sorts of sentiments and emotions were prevalent throughout the venue.

The Scorpions are one of those few bands in the hard rock and metal scene that you need to see live and whose performance and musicianship lives up to any expectation that you may have. They have a few remaining U.S. dates scheduled before heading to Europe where they have a number of dates scheduled into early 2016.

Set List

Going Out with a Bang
Make it Real
The Zoo
Coast to Coast
Top of the Bill / Steamrock Fever / Speedy’s Coming / Catch Your Train
We Built This House
Delicate Dance
Always Somewhere / Eye of the Storm / Send Me an Angel
Wind of Change
Rock ‘n’ Roll Band
Dynamite
In the Line of Fire
Kottak Attack
Blackout
No One Like You
Big City Nights

Encore

Still Loving You
Rock You Like a Hurricane
The Scorpions




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