I was going to London anyway and then I found out that Alice Cooper and Brighton was only a 3£ train ticket away. I couldn't resist and I am very glad I went there. The train ride was over exactly when my 3 Budweisers were empty and the hotel was only a slow 20 minutes walk from the train station with a nice view of the seaside.
The Venue was perhaps 300 meters from the hotel and the queue was already in place when I walked past at 17:00. I went back to the venue around 19:00 and discovered that it was a rather new venue with excellent facilities. First I pre-paid for the entire gig as MP3 and bought a couple of t-shirts. Then I went to the bar upstairs and found the cloakroom a little later, so I didn't have to carry my jacket or the new stuff around. I also had to get myself a wristband so I could get access to the floor.
Support was: Man-Raze [Def Leppard’s Phil Collen (vocals, guitar), Sex Pistols founder Paul Cook (drums) and Girl's Simon Laffy (bass).] They were actually pretty great for a support band and I enjoyed listening to them while I also enjoyed visiting the nearby bar on several occasions.
The sound in the venue was really excellent. The music room reminded me a bit of a mix between Copenhagen's Vega and Paris' Le Zenith. There was a balcony on three of the sides but true rock'n'rollers obviously always stick to the floor. I think the size could perhaps have been somewhere near 1500? All in all an excellent place for a gig.
Alice Cooper mostly played the usual classics combined with a few surprises. The Coop himself was in perfect form and the band was top tuned. The Theatre Of Death tour includes all the best of Cooper's stage theatrics like the guillotine, the hanging and much much more. I managed to shoot a lot of pictures and also a video of the hanging.
The crowd were mostly somewhat older 30+ folks and they knew their Cooper lyrics to the bone. They sang loud and proudly on every single song and it was a fantastic party. The Brighton Centre is an excellent venue and Brighton seems to be a friendly and enjoyable city to go to next time you're in the mood for a rock'n'roll party.
It is difficult to write something clever about an Alice Cooper gig. I've seen him several times now, and tons of times on video as well. The gigs are variations over the same setlist and the same stage requisites. But no matter how you look at it, he always delivers, he has a tight band, the theatrics are excellent and hilarious and the songs - ladies and gentlemen - the songs are fucking excellent. So it all boils down to how the mood is on a certain night. How the chemistry is. How the crowd is. How great or lousy the sound is. All those parameters determine the final rating.
If Alice Cooper had decided to add a few songs from his Special Forces period I would gladly have granted him 6/6, but for now, he'll have to do with 5/6 until he decides to add them to the setlist!
The Cooper band:
- Alice Cooper - Vocals
- Chuck Garric - Bass, Backing Vocals
- Damon Johnson - Guitar, Backing Vocals
- Keri Kelli - Guitar, Backing Vocals
- Jimmy DeGrasso - Drums
- Tiffany Lowe - Killer
School's Out, Department of Youth, I’m Eighteen, Wicked Young Man, Ballad of Dwight Fry, Go To Hell, Guilty, Welcome To My Nightmare, Cold Ethyl, Poison, The Awakening, From The Inside, Nurse Rosetta, Is It My Body?, Be My Lover, Only Women Bleed, I Never Cry, The Black Widow(instrumental), Vengeance Is Mine, Devil's Food, Dirty Diamonds, Billion Dollar Babies, Killer, I Love The Dead, No More Mr. Nice Guy, Under My Wheels, School's Out.