September 25, 2014 Twisted Sister take over Best Buy Theater NYC 9-5-14
Heavy Metal legends Twisted Sister have been rocking and rolling for over four decades now. Reuniting a few times throughout the late ’90s and early ‘2000s, the band has been consistently active now since 2003 when Jay Jay French, Eddie “Fingers” Ojeda, , Mark “The Animal” Mendoza, A. J. Pero and Dee Snider reformed for good. Returning with their first studio album in seventeen years with Still Hungry in 2004 the band has been anything but ordinary over recent years releasing a fun holiday album titled A Twisted Christmas in 2006 and participating in a series of charity fundraising events including Hurricane Karina in 2012. Continuing their socially aware ways and helping others, on Friday September 5th they hosted a special benefit show at Best Buy Theater in NYC for The Ocular Immunology and Uveitis Foundation. With direct support from fellow New Yorkers Killcode and the popular Adrenaline Mob this show was red hot even before the doors opened.
Up first was independent five-piece hard rock band Killcode. Having built quite a reputation around the New York City area as a band to see, Killcode showed their chops as a veteran band ready to burst out of their shell into the national spotlight. Made up of Tom Morrissey on lead vocals, Chas on guitar, D.C. Gonzales on guitar, Erric Bonesmith on bass, and Rob Noxious on drums the band’s first song “Slave” set the mood with a melodic bass-line and heavy drums. Dazzling the audience with fast guitar playing, Morrissey grabbed the audience’s attention by making eye contact any chance he had while belting out each tune including newbie “Answer”. Sounding extremely tight musically the band showed they were having a blast on stage as they played on with other songs like “Bleed the 5th, “Show Me” and “Hands Up”. Do not miss a chance to catch this band live, they will not disappoint.
Next up another New York founded product by the name of Adrenaline Mob which was ready to rev up their amps and explode. Having made a strong name for themselves internationally, Adrenaline Mob has come a long way in three short years. After the highly successful debut of Omertà in 2012 the band wasted no time pumping out another solid record with Men of Honor earlier this year. Led by Symphony X vocalist Russell Allen, lead guitarist Mike Orlando, Twisted Sister drummer, A. J. Pero, and newest addition bassist Erik Leonhardt The Mob is retooled and ready to go.
Kicking off fittingly with “Mob is Back”, the intense opening of heavy guitars and fast pace drums really excited the room right from the get-go. Allen, showing his rugged rocker side, came out in full outfit of leather, sunglasses and hat to match as his scratchy screams and tenor voice matched his look. Marching through Orlando’s guitar playing was nothing less than spectacular while every muscle in his hands and face express each note struck. Becoming more enthralled in the performance with each passing song, including “Judgement Day” which received a louder crowd reaction. In fact during “Hit The Wall”, Allen came out with a bat playfully smacking band t-shirts into the sea of people on the floor. As if the set was not already exciting enough a huge surprise came during their cover of Black Sabbath’s “The Mob Rules”, where highly recognized and accomplished vocalist Jeff Scott Soto joined in on stage. Provoking screams of excitement it was one hell of a way to end a set to which the band thanked everyone and stated how humble they were to open for Twisted Sister.
After a short break it was time for Long Island’s adored metal kings Twisted Sister. Coming out as animated and entertaining as ever Snider sported a white fringe jacket while his wild long curly mane enthralled the crowd. Starting out with “Stay Hungry”, Snider screamed each note pitch perfect as the band rocked hard and heavy. Going into other fan favorites like “The Kids are Back”, “Under the Blade”, “Captain Howdy” and “Shoot ‘Em Down”, the audience went insane singing along each word and having a blast. Snider being the charismatic and likable front man he is, he spoke in a friendly tone to the audience and as always had more than a handful of people laughing. It is nice to see he has not allowed fame to go to his head and his personality is as humble, real, and warm as when the band first started.
Moving along with the sense of urgency rock-n-roll requires the band played “You Can’t Stop Rock ‘n’ Roll”, “I Believe in Rock ‘n’ Roll”, and the anthem “We’re Not Gonna Take It”. Mendoza slapped his bass all set through, while on the opposite side of the stage Ojeda and French played the classic riffs with intense concentration. Not to be outdone with passion, Pero was like a burst of thunder behind the drum kit from start to finish. All the energy exhibited on stage poured into the audience with each passing tune and Snider continued to be right in the face of cameras letting out primal vocals that prove strong and vital. Not forgetting the cause they were supporting, Snider made sure to recognize the foundation and showed sincere support for what they are doing. Being wonderful philanthropic organizers, they even performed on pink guitars during the set in support of the “Pinkburst Project”. Stating they would sign the guitars and put them up for bid. Admirably they assured 100% of the money would go to the foundation.
Continuing on their road of intense exhilaration, Twisted Sister wrapped up the final act of the night with “I Wanna Rock”, “The Price”, “Burn in Hell” and The Rolling Stones cover “It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll (But I Like It)”. Demanding more the audience took over the airwaves of Best Buy Theater until Snider and company came out for an encore of “S.M.F.”. Returning followers to the early club days of the band this closing was a tremendous way to say goodnight. Twisted Sister put on one hell of a show that left their fans completely satisfied. Amazingly sustaining the same level of enthusiasm throughout their time on stage they merely solidified their place in rock-n-roll history.