Live from Wolverhampton’s Wulfrun Hall, American legends ‘Mr. Big’ play the final show of their 6 night November tour in support of their latest album ‘Defying Gravity’. Joined by sleaze rockers ‘Faster Pussycat’ and blues orientated hard rockers ‘The Answer’ surely we’re in for a good night.
LA born Faster Pussycat had the honour of opening up proceedings and were given the difficult task of warming up the crowd, certainly not an easy challenge while the room is still half empty and fans are still walking through the door. They really were against the odds; it’s hard to get in the vibe when you’re playing to an empty room, this didn’t phase guitarist Ace Von Johnson’s performance however who ripped his way through the set as if he was playing to millions. Towards the middle of their set the room finally started to fill and a few die hard fans had made their way to the front who danced and sang along giving the band some well needed energy helping them shake off the sketchy start enabling them to finish in full form.
The stage goes dark and from the shadows drummer James Heatley, bassist Micky Waters and guitarist Paul Mahon emerge onstage. The room is filled with the sound of drum and bass as they break into their mid-paced single ‘Solas’, vocalist Cormac Neeson appears from stage right: The Answer are here. The stage suddenly feels massive as the energy emitted from this four piece is undeniable. One after another, bluesy hard rock anthems are forced into our eardrums leaving us screaming for more with Cormac’s vocals being a real highlight; what a voice this man wields. Four songs in and the harmonica makes an appearance for ‘Faith Gone Down’, giving fans a chance to relax for the time being, adding a sense of dynamics to the set. All in all an absolutely solid performance from ‘The Answer’, ending their set with ‘Under the Sky’ I could have happily watched another half an hour and I now fully look forward to catching a headline performance from this bunch of lads.
There’s nothing that can possibly be said about Mr. Big that you haven’t heard before; in short, they were brilliant.
Does that really come as a surprise though when you have two of rocks finest players in your band? With bass player Billy Sheehan and guitarist Paul Gilbert bouncing off each other for an evening there’s not much that can go wrong. Opening their set with ‘Daddy, Brother, Lover, Little Boy (The Electric Drill Song)’ you get an insight into just how much fun these guys are having up there which really makes a massive positive impact on the crowd. Who doesn’t love a bunch of guys messing around using electric drills to play the guitar? Yes it’s a gimmick but it was great in the early 90’s and you better believe it’s still great now. With such fine backing you may think that there’s a risk of vocalist Eric Martin getting lost in the mix but Eric handles himself spectacularly. His vocal performance was magnificent throughout and he had the crowd in the palm of his hands from the moment he stepped foot onstage.
What can I say? Their virtuosity and level of musicianship is through the roof, in combination with their larger than life personas and stage presence I can guarantee that nobody left the venue disappointed.