It's been 20 years since the formation of leading hair metal bands Poison and Cinderella, and while they've continued to tour throughout the years, it seems fitting that both would join forces to cele
It's been 20 years since the formation of leading hair metal bands Poison and Cinderella, and while they've continued to tour throughout the years, it seems fitting that both would join forces to celebrate the two-decade milestone. With both bands touring behind recent hits packages, it was seemingly 1988 all over again in Toronto, minus the spandex and with feathered hair occasionally replaced by receding hairlines.
But both bands managed to win over the audience, albeit going about it totally different ways. Backed by a video screen, green laser lights and shooting flames, Poison kicked off its 75-minute set with "Look What the Cat Dragged In," from its 1986 debut album of the same name. The core of singer Bret Michaels, guitarist C.C. DeVille, bassist Bobby Dall and drummer Rikki Rockett tore through the song with an almost punk rock abandon.
Confessing his appreciation for the fans over 20 years in a rather hoarse voice, Michaels went headlong into "I Want Action," with DeVille providing the obligatory guitar solo as images of ladies giving themselves sensual breast examinations appeared behind them.
After a mediocre cover of Grand Funk Railroad's "We're an American Band," Poison lit a spark under the crowd with the high-octane "Ride the Wind," as the crowd drowned out Michaels' vocals. Unfortunately, and perhaps due to pacing themselves, the momentum was lost with the band leaving the stage so DeVille could give a solo. Only after the one-two punch of "Cry Tough," thanks to Rockett's frantic playing, and the uber ballad "Something To Believe In," did Poison seem to get back on track. Another highlight was the barroom blues rock of "Your Mama Don't Dance," featuring Michaels on harmonica.
For the homestretch, Poison churned out favorites beginning with its signature, featuring the obligatory parade of cigarette lighters held aloft. Michaels even managed to work in a ridiculous Fred Durst-like rap during the punchy "Unskinny Bop" to the delight of the crowd before "Talk Dirty To Me" closed out the somewhat short but sweet set.
As much as Poison seemingly galloped through its songs, Cinderella ambled into its set quite effectively, beginning with the seedy blues rock of "Fallin' Apart at the Seams." Lead singer Tom Keifur and company split their hour-long set between 1986's "Night Songs," 1988's "Long Cold Winter" and 1990's "Heartbreak Station." The raspy Keifer, eerily resembling a youthful Steven Tyler, worked the stage and the audience like a pro during "Push Push" and "Somebody Save Me."
Keifer, who also played a sax solo during "Shelter Me," was easily the star of the set. Whether it was his delivery on the thick, Zeppelin-like "Night Songs" or collapsing mid-song following a cat-like wail during "Nobody's Fool," the lead singer showed fans just what all the fuss was about back in the day. The group returned for a two-song encore featuring the piano-led "Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)" and "Shake Me."
Here is Cinderella's set list:
"Fallin' Apart at the Seams"
"Somebody Save Me"
"Hot and Bothered"
"Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)"
Here is Poison's set list:
"Look What the Cat Dragged In"
"I Want Action"
"We're an American Band"
"I Won't Forget You"
"Ride The Wind"
"I Hate Every Bone in Your Body But Mine"
"Something To Believe In"
"Your Mama Don't Dance"
"Every Rose Has Its Thorn"
"Nothin' But a Good Time"
"Talk Dirty to Me"