The “I just started vacation” playlist – 7/1/06

  1. Extreme – s/t
  2. Starship – Greatest Hits
  3. Meat Loaf – Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell
  4. Styx – Greatest Hits
  5. Van Halen – VH 3
  6. Warrant – Born Again

On deck: Surrender – Better Later Than Never

- Had to re-live the Extreme debut after seeing them live last night and I have been meaning to give VH 3 another listen to see if it’s Gary’s fault or the songwriting. I might give it a review, then again, it might not be worth it.

- I really dig the new Warrant. Call me crazy but I think this is a pretty good comeback and it’s better than anything they could do with Jani Lane.

- Heard ‘I’d Do Anything For Love’ on Boston radio last night so I’m revisiting the whole album.

- Starship had some decent hits with Mickey Thomas on vocals.

Extreme concert in Boston, MA

Extreme – Bank of America Pavilion (Boston, MA) – 6/30/06

To start my week’s vacation, I drove the hour to Boston for the Extreme reunion show at the BOA Pavilion (formerly the FleetBoston Pavilion). Located directly on the South Boston waterfront, the amphitheater is the perfect spot for a Summer concert.

Before I get into Extreme, let me talk a bit about the opener, Charlie Farren (former Joe Perry Project & ex-Farrenheit). Charlie came out alone, with his guitar, and treated the crowd to some solo tunes, a couple covers, and a few selections from local favorites Farrenheit. I didn’t know any songs he played, except the covers, and I was impressed. Add a mix of AOR, Rock, Blues and Jazz and you get the Charlie Farren sound. He has his solo and Farrenheit CDs for sale via his website, worth checking out.

On to Extreme…..

I know people think of the ballad ‘More Than Words’ when you mention Extreme but this Boston band can rock. Being part of the local scene in Rhode Island back in the day, Boston bands like Extreme would come down and play clubs like The Living Room or JR’s Fastlane regularly. We got to know the band and the songs well. The debut album in 1989 became a favorite in the circles I ran in back in my high school days. Since those days, I have always been a supporter of the band, Gary solo and in Van Halen, and Nuno’s solo work.

Last night’s show was spectacular, definitely a warm homecoming for a band that hasn’t played out in 12 years! The Boston crowd was treated to a 2 hour 15 min set representing all four studio albums and a surprise encore with some very special local guests.

I can’t remember the exact order but the setlist included:

  • Decadence Dance
  • When I’m President
  • Get The Funk Out
  • More Than Words
  • It (‘s A Monster)
  • Play With Me
  • Rest In Peace
  • Cupid’s Dead
  • Tragic Comic
  • Our Father
  • Am I Ever Gonna Change
  • Tell Me Something I Don’t Know (with Mike Mangini on drums)
  • Leave Me Alone (with Mike Mangini on drums)
  • Medley: Kid Ego/Little Girls/Teacher’s Pet/Mutha (Don’t Wanna Go To School Today)

Encore:

  • Hole Hearted
  • Rock’n’Roll Band (with Barry Goudreau & Brad Delp of Boston)
  • Rock’n’Roll (Zep cover/with Barry Goudreau & Brad Delp)

I could be missing a couple of tunes but you get the idea. The band was in fine form, top notch playing and a TON of energy. Nice to see them having a good time onstage: smiling, cracking jokes with each other, enjoying the show. They also acknowledged Mike Mangini (drums from 1994-1996) by having him do a couple tunes, something other bands might not do. Having Brad and Barry from Boston come out for the encores absolutely blew the roof off. Brad Delp can still sing at 50+ like he did on Boston’s debut record 30 years ago, simply amazing.

The morning after…..

I’m sitting here listening to the debut record and reminiscing back to high school weekends spent hanging out in parking lots playing different tapes and drinking beers until the police kicked us out and the party would move to another spot. We used to have tons of people around a single boombox listening to something new and guzzling brews. Those memories made me realize how truly great music was back in the ’80s, and is now…..how so many people really got into the music and it influenced their lives. Watching Extreme last night gave me a slice of my youth back for 2 hours, it was 1989 all over again!