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Concert Review and Photos: THE DEAD DAISIES at Manchester Academy

The Dead Daisies Deliver Satisfaction and Burn It Down at Manchester Academy 2 - 12 April 2018

The Dead Daisies turned up the heat in a sold-out venue as they invited the Manchester rock fans to Burn It Down. They are surely one of the hardest working rock bands around as already in a short five-year career they have released an Ep, a live album and yes, a quite staggering three studio album releases. Together with a never-ending set of tour dates, they are the rock band that never rests or lets up. Rather than however coming across on stage as staid and just going through the motions I feel that they grow stronger with each set of dates. Although there has generally been a revolving or as I prefer to term it an evolving line-up the band’s current membership is one that should last for quite some time. The current set of Burn It Down UK dates had sold out completely a quite unusual case in today’s current climate where bands generally suffer from a lack of audience numbers when playing live. It’s an oversimplification to merely dismiss The Dead Daisies as just another supergroup. They have created their own musical legacy. The individuals are not merely just content to ride on their success and former glories of their previous bands but to form their own new musical chapter instead. I do still feel that they need to ditch the cover versions though.

The set would traverse all the band’s releases to date with obvious prominence given to the current Burn It Down studio release. Despite it having not long been released already most of the Manchester audience recognised the tracks from it and gave up their appreciation for the songs like they were old familiar friends. A new drummer this time around and it was great to see and chat to the legendary Deen Castronovo who was clearly relishing his new lease of stage life that had been offered to him by the band after a difficult few years. Being singled out at several points during the set clearly illustrated that the other band members in The Dead Daisies appreciated him as much as he had indicated to me in the pre-show interview that he felt towards them for rescuing him from his own personal wilderness.  

As indicated earlier, I do feel that the band should now be at the stage where “Midnight Moses” and “Helter Skelter” should be omitted from their live set. However, when I have previously chatted to other band members they feel that by playing those covers it infuses a fun element into the live proceedings. Irrespective of those this was quite simply one of the best shows that I have seen the band play (and I have seen them quite a few times in several different countries). Each band member got their own solo spot and while these can generate a feeling of apathy amongst audience members there was clearly no increase in the bar queue during those spots. Doug Aldrich continues to improve in ability and sublime talent each time I see him, and while new Daisy Deen is widely known for his drumming talents his vocals also are unparalleled. Indeed, he was even allowed vocal solo spots on live numbers during his long stint with Journey. That is something to be marveled at.

Each time The Dead Daisies come to play a Manchester show it’s a step up in capacity from their previous one. On current form I expect this to continue especially built on a Uk chart album success which John had particularly referenced from the stage. Outside of the incredible live performance the Daisies also seem to be setting new methods in terms of fan interaction-free fan club membership and a free meet and greet after every single show. Just little things that seem to engage fans passions and support and that also fly in the face of current trends of bands charging extortionate prices for meet and greets. Their audience is viewed more as a family than an easy source of revenue. It’s this sense of personal connection which endears them more to people and will ensure that this particular “rock supergroup “will continue to Burn It Down on live stages all over the globe for quite some time. Highly recommended for the perfect night out, The Dead Daisies deliver satisfaction every single time that they step on the stage boards live wherever country or venue that they play.


All photos © John Gilleese

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Mark Dean

I'm a 40+ music fan. Fond mostly of rock and metal - my staple musical food delights. Originally from Northern Ireland, I am now based in the UK-Manchester. I have a hectic musical existence with regular shows and interviews. Been writing freelance for five years now with several international websites. Passionate about what I do, I have been fortunate already to interview many of my all-time musical heroes. My music passion was first created by seeing Status Quo at the tender age of 15. While I still am passionate about my rock and metal, I have found that with age my taste has diversified so that now I am actually dipping into different musical genres and styles for the first time. Photo: Mark Dean with Jeff Kendrick of Devildriver - Photography by Olga Kuzmenko

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