Topic: LaVendore Rogue
Finally managed to catch these characters at the week-end, and was utterly blown away. Of course, expected a good night, afterall, no stranger to Hokie Joint, but had to reckon on this being a new band; not change a couple of members and call it Hokie MkII; this is more like Bad Company after Free or Whitesnake after Deep Purple.
JoJo still rules the stage with his Tom Waites growl and persona even more disreputable than Capt. Jack, Cupsy is still impassive behind the drum kit, like Charlie Watts' younger brother but Joel is given more elbow room for his guitar work, now weaving through Warren Lynn's keyboards; the whole lot nailed together by Rob Barry on bass.
Wanting to establish LVR in their own right, most of the set was drawn from the What's The Meaning of.... EP as well as some new numbers, and the sooner they're committed to recording, the better. However, the past wasn't entirely ignored and some Hokie favourites bubbled to the surface through out the split set (total 100+mins), including White Chocolate Cake, Ghost, Force of Habit: Franklin & The Way It Goes bringing the main set to a thundering close before a full on Lynyrd Skynyrd encore.
Obviously, there's a world of difference between the Rogues and Hokies, not least the loss of Giles King's harmonica; this gives them a rockier edge, and possibly will lose them some old fans but no doubt will gather them some new ones. Whatever people's opinions, this band is a party on 10 legs, not unlike The Faces of old in attitude.