>> SWEDEN ROCK 2004 <<

Danger Danger Live at Sweden Rock Festival 12.06.04

With Ted Poley back in the ranks Danger Danger is back in action, and the band sounded like he never left! Starting the day’s show at noon I was kinda’ reluctant in my expectations towards how much of a life the guys were going to stir up, and if they were able communicate to get the crowd started at such an early time of day. I never questioned Danger Danger’s songmaterial and playing abilities as I knew these guys would be top notch.The guys aimed to please and believe me they succeeded beyond anyone’s imaginations! 
The band sounded tight and energetic, and the crowd was pleased. Yes; even the hungover ones! Pretty much every hit during their Ted Poley years was what was served up, to the amusement of your’s truly which were all smiles all the time. Ted Poley’s capabilities as a frontman can’t be overestimated, as good as the band was there was no doubt who was the vehicle and for that matter the man in the drivers seat. I’m not trying to take anything away from theperformance of the others, but Ted is the perfect frontman for a ballsy A.O.R. band of their calibre. .....and boy could that man work a crowd!!!
Bruno Ravel was being the brilliant, steady and attitudefilled bassplayer not to mention the brain and the “driving force” being the main songwriter behind the band and all. Just Bruno and drummer Steve West are left from the band that started out in the late 80’s until Ted came back that is. His performance not to mention his energy and enthusiasm tells me that Steve also play’s a very important part. The two of ‘em Bruno and Steve have a special bond between them that becomes very evident. IMO it’s the “rhythmsection-brotherhood”, as well as both of them being in the band since the debut in 89’ tells me that they’re dependent of each other in the best sense of the word. How ‘bout what many considers to be the most important instrument in Rock’n’Roll then; speaking guitars of course! RobMarcello did a good job riffing and playing great rhythmtracks but he fail to please me on his solowork. The man is is great player, but his solos lack soul and finesse IMO as I feel that he repeats himself through most of the show. Not exactly bad, but uninmaginative and uninspired somehow......
Nevertheless I’m glad I got to see Danger Danger play a great show (with the middlesection being nothing short of A.O.R magic) in Scandinavia, as I’m shure it will be a while till we’ll see that happen again. But if, and when it happens I’ll be there that’s for shure! One of the best and most party-funpacked gigs of this years festival. In my opinion Danger Danger were this year’s 
“Y & T” performance so maybe we’ll see them again next year with any luck.... 

Roar Kleven

Playlist (Best songs marked with *):

Boys will be boys
Beat the bullet
Crazy nights
Under the gun *
Goin’ goin’ gone *
Don’t blame it on love*
Bang Bang*
Afraid of love
If you wanna have a good time
Monkey business
Rock America
I still think about you
Naughty, naughty

Montrose Live at Sweden Rock 10.06.04

After reading the programme I really looked forward to hearing Montrose’s line-up with Pat Torpey (ds), Chuck Wright (bs) and Keith St. John on voc’s. But that never happend as a whole new line-up of the classic band were to perform at the festival.An old favourite of mine whom I never would have believed I’d ever see on stage here in Europe was handeling the vocals; John Levesque (Wild Horses) and another old favourite was taking place behind the drums; Jimmy De Grasso (ex- Y&T, White Lion, Alice Cooper and Megadeth), the Godsend Ronnie Montrose and a bassplayer who’s name escaped me. I can honestly say that I was extremely happy with the “replacements” Ronnie had recruited.

The audience was a blend of 70’s Montrose fans and others like me that had little or no relation to or knowledge to the band (shame on me!)! My only knowledge about the band was that: it is Bluesy Hardrock, that it was the band where Sammy Hagar (Van Halen) and Denny Carmassi (Heart, Coverdale /Page and Whitesnake) started out their carrieers as well as that Ronnie Montrose is a well respected guitarplayer who later also had great success with a band called Gamma in other words I must admit that the band’s history is a black hole in my books. 
The new line-up were smokin’ and they delivered a concert of Heavy Bluesrock the exact way it should be done. To be honest I can’t believe I have heard and seen such a great Bluesy Rockshow (by a for me new band) since the days I discovered Dream Police live in back in 90’! 
Vocally the awesome John Levesque gave me shivers up and down my spine (not to mention up and down again) as well as a showman he really is a man to know how to attract the attention of the audienece, being confident but not arrogant. Many frontmen has a got a thing or two to learn from this man. 
Mr. De Grasso is a drummer of the supreme sort, and he delivered the only drumsolo at this Sweden Rock that actually was worth listening to (at least of the one’s I heard). Lurking in the background giving their acknowledges was fellow drummer James Kottak (nowadays misusing his enourmous talent in Scorpions) and Y&T’s bassman and Jimmy’s former band colleague Phil Kennemore. The bassplayer was steady as a rock so that Mr. Wright was hardly missed at all. After seeing and not to mention listening to the amazing Ronnie Montrose I really understand why this man is admired, cause he mesmerised the crowd with Bluesy guitarplaying that simply is out of this world! The guy is a magican, and that’s a fact! If Bluesrock is your thing I’m shure you wouldn’t have been disapponted after having seen this gig, cause it left a big fat smile on every person in the audience, and me....??? I actually instantly became a fan there and then, if you can imagine that! 

Roar Kleven 

Heart Live at Sweden Rock Festival 12.06.04

I must admit that my knowledge about what have been up to since the early 90’s isn’t the best, therefore I didn’t have the highest expectations regarding their show at this years Sweden Rock. As it turns out I really should have had great expectations! For those of us (yes, me included) that expected a 80’s hitparade would be very disappointed, then again who am I to complain because the Wilson-sisters & company gave us a first-rate highclass Rock’n’Roll show from first to last note. Shure we got “These dreams” and “Alone”, but that would be as expected, right?? As for the rest of the gig (most of it that is) Heart served up a lot of oldies from the 70’s era from albums like: “Dreamboat Annie”, “Dog and butterfly” as well as newer stuff from their resent outing “Jupiter’s darling ” and their classic and classy Led Zeppelin covers. The whole show was brought to us in such a convincing manner, needless to say I was more than impressed. 
The band were extremely good and tight, who among the other great musicans included one-time Ozzy Osbourne and Alice In Chains bassplayer Mike Inez. Ann Wilson vocals is a pure bliss to listen to while she sings her ....errrrrr...heart out. Completely leaving the other female singers on this years festival like say Tarja Turunen of Nightwish in the dust. Now Ann, there’s a lady that really can sing!!! Not forgetting the vocals or the guitarplaying by her sister Nancy, because her performance is no less convincing. Her guitarperformance is a unique blend of power and skill, as well as awesome vocals and backingvocals. 
Eventhough most of the material presented on the stage this gig were new to many of the spectators, it was obvious that the crowd were pleased by what they heard and saw. Even if I expected something else I know now that I really wouldn’t have it any other way. Heart was superb, giving us one of the festivals most unexpected but also one of the most welcomed surprises this years Sweden Rock.

Roar Kleven

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Photos by Atle Kleven.