Bands: The Dead Daisies & Tygers of Pan Tang

Venue: 02 Academy, Newcastle

Date: 15 November 2018


After a grueling 3 days rocking out as HRH XI, it was a short rest bite then it was back on the gig trail once more and what better way than to re-live two of the outstanding bands from the weekend.  I’m talking about the Tygers of Pan Tang and the HRH headliners The Dead Daises.  

Opening up proceeding were local hero’s Tygers of Pan Tang, a band that I have followed from when I was knee high to a Marshall Amp.  The band rocked out of Whitley Bay on N.W.O.B.H.M. wave and for me, the band were never Heavy Metal, but pure Hard Rock and this is has been the mantle for Robb Weir, the only original member of the band, to take the band forward.

Over the years there have been many line-up changes, but this line-up is in my opinion, the best its been.  Jacopo Meille is a top notch vocalist, Craig Ellis is a great drummer, Gav Gray is a hell of bass player and what can I say about Micky Crystal, this guy is a guitar legend in the making.  

The band hit the stage to rapturous cheers to the intro of Mud's 'Tiger Feet', the Tygers roared into action.  As local boys they had the crowd behind them from the start, as they opened things up with ‘Only the Brave’ from the bands latest album, before rolling back the years to the 'Crazy Nights' album for ‘Love Don’t Stay’.  I must say that this line-up really does breathe new life into the classic Tygers tracks, making them sound fresher and edgier than ever before.  This was even more evident as they kept to the 'Crazy Nights' album a superb rendition of ‘Gangland’, with Weir and Crystal dueling out the licks on this one.

It was over to one of my favourite Tygers album's ‘Spellbound’ for ‘Take It’, with Meille really bringing the vocal heat to this one.  There aren’t many bands who are can outshine their legacy, but the Tygers are certainly doing juts that.

It was on to the 'Wildcat' album for the fantastic ‘Euthanasia’, before returning to the latest album for the superb ‘Glad Rags’.  This blues driven rocker really had the crowd rocking along, as they continued to do for the latest single ‘The Devil You Know’.  

It was back to the classics for the excellent ‘Suzie Smiled’, which perhaps should have been renamed "Robb Smiled", as the main man had a smile from ear to ear as he rocked out the licks on this classic.

The band's all too short set came to an end with ‘Hellbound’, which wrapped up another great set from one of the hardest working bands who headed off to sunny Spain for a few gigs.  After those shows they'll be back to work on the new album which is due out early next year.   

Now for the headliners The Dead Daisies, formed by Jon Stevens and David Lowy back in 2013.  The singer-songwriter and guitarist got together after David Edwards, ex-manager of INXS, reintroduced them and the rest shall we say, is history.

There have been a few band changes over the past few years, but this line-up of Lowy, Marco Mendoza (bass), John Corabi (lead vocals), Doug Aldrich (lead guitar) and newest member Deen Castronovo (drums), has to be ranked as the best.  This who’s who of rock have come together to bring hard rock back to where it should be, and with the new album 'Burn it Down' released last April, the band have been on the road ever since and tonight gave us a two hour rock show of the highest quality

As the intro 'Rock n' Roll Outlaws' faded away, the band opened up the next two hours of non-stop rock n' roll with the Alex Harvey Band cover ‘Midnight Moses’.  A cover to open a show I hear you say!  Well if you gonna cover a classic then make it your own and the DD’s sure did that.  Corabi has the vocal power to carry this one off and with a star-studded band behind him, this was a winner all the way.

The set continued with ‘Evil’ from the 'Revolucion' album and from the off Doug Aldrich was on fire from the off, as he lit up the Les Paul.  

It was over to the 'Make Some Noise' album for the title track, before rocking on with ‘Rise Up’ from the brand new album ‘Burn It Down’.  This was meat and bones rock n' roll that showcased perfectly just what this band are capable of.

The good time rocking didn’t stop as the guys rocked on with the ‘Dead and Gone’, with Corabi unleashing those bluesy driven raspy vocals the great effect.  Yeah the guy might have been misplaced replacing Vince Neil in Motley Crue, but you can't deny he has one hell of a rock voice and personally I like that Motley Crue album.

The rocking never stopped as they continued to whip up a storm with ‘What Goes Around' and 'Resurrected'.

But for me it was the mid-set acoustic set that was just wonderful.  They didn’t perform this in the set in Wales and I wish they had because this showed the true talent within this band, with Castronovo (or as he has been donned by the Newcastle crowd “DEENO”), put a great vocal to Rod Steward ‘Maggie May’

After the acoustic interlude it was back to the full electric attack with the current single ‘Burn It Down’, again with Corabi’s bluesy driven vocal really bringing this one to life.

Band intros don’t come any better than Daisy style, as each member showed off their prowess to a different song for each band member.  For Lowy it was 'You Shook Me All Night Long'.  For Mendoza it was ‘I Love Rock n' Roll’.  For Deeno it was Alice Cooper's 'Schools Out', and for Aldrich it was 'Long Live Rock n' Roll'.  Then for the main man himself, Corabi has ‘I Know It's Only Rock n' Roll But I Like It’.  

With this band comes a few covers as the album show and one of the best of the night was the Rolling Stones cover 'Bitch', which gave Corabi a chance to show off his Jagger swagger.

The set was rounded off in splendid style with a cover of the Beatles 'Helter Skelter', before the band left the stage to rapturous cheers and chants for more, and more we got as we set on down South of the border with excellent ‘Mexico’, before rounding off one of the gigs of the year with a little Deep Purple and 'Highway Star'.

There aren’t many bands around who kicked off in 2013 and can put together a non-stop two hours of great rock n' roll and the Dead Daises showed tonight how it done.

The super-group moniker has been attached to this band by many, but all I saw was five like minded musicians doing what they do best and loving every minute of it.  Long may it continue!

Review & Photos by: Barry McMinn & Little Linda




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