JAM Magazine Concert Reviews

November 22, 2013
The Garage
Saarbrücken,  DEU
Review by Scott Childress
Photos by Scott Childress

Skid Row

Skid Row Back In The Deutschland

When I heard that Skid Row was coming to the Garage in Saarbrucken, Germany, I knew I needed to be there. Being part of the Dallas music scene in the 80s and 90s, I was no stranger to Johnny Solinger's vocal talents and knew he was a perfect fit for Skid Row when he became the front man 13 years ago.

Skid Row is currently touring Europe in support of their new EP, New World Rebellion Chapter 1. A great album, and a great value with 5 kick ass songs for 5 bucks.

"It's a new concept we have, putting out an EP every 6-8 months so we can write, and go on the road like now," explains Johnny. "Instead of putting out one full album every couple of years, then nothing."

Skid Row signed with Mega Force Records in North America, and UDR in Europe last year and are getting great support with their current tour.

"We are really happy, in fact UDR is releasing another single "This is Killing Me" the ballad from Chapter 1 and will be getting radio airplay in Germany." Solinger added.

Skid Row opened the show with "Let's Go" with Johnny sporting his signature Texas Rocker look with cowboy hat and mirrored Ray Bans. Quickly switching to the classic head ban as they rolled straight into "Big Guns" without a chance for the crowd of around a 1,000 to take a breath.

"Guten Abend Deutchland!" (Good Evening Germany) Solinger screams as he addresses the audience while the band switches guitars. "Es tut mir leid, mein deutch ist nicht gut." (I'm sorry, my German sucks) As the first chords begin "Makin a Mess" that started a three song melee that included "Piece of Me" and "18 and Life."

The next three-song set really reminded me on how great, Dave "Snake" Sabo, Rachel Bolen, and Scotti Hill are. They played so tight and fed of feach other so well, during "Thick is the Skin," "Riot Act," and "Darkened Room." It was like watching the 20 year olds from the 1990. And with the newest addition of Rob Hammersmith, Skid Row is a solid as they ever been.

Wearing his "Here's Johnny" Jack Nicholson t-shirt Johnny Solinger shows he is a veteran front man as he gets the crowd fired up and presents "Kings of Demolition," the first single from New World Rebellion Chapter1, a song that really showcases Solinger's talents and vocals. The audience responded with thunderous cheer.

Solinger points out that the crowd's t-shirts prove that Metal is live and well in Germany, then he introduces and turns the microphone over to Rachel Bolen for a punk classic rendition of The Ramones' "Psycho Therapy" from the album B-Sides Ourselves, which got the crowd bouncing.

Skid Row is well known for their great metal ballads and their live version of their newest ballad "This is Killing Me" was spot on. Snake's acoustic was clear and Solinger's vocal clean. Nothing is as hard to pull off live as a ballad, but this is Skid Row and they transitioned straight into "Slave to the Grind" and rounded off the set with "Monkey Business".

Encore? We don't need no stinking encore. The only chance Skid Row had to catch their breaths was during the setup of the acoustics for the power ballad "I Remember You" which reminded me that Skid Row has played 29 cities in 12 countries, but that was quickly erased as they closed the night when they nailed "Youth Gone Wild" and leaving the crowd in Saarbrucken wanting more.

And more they will get! Skid Row has signed on to do most of all of the big classic 2014 Music Festivals in Europe next year, to include the Poland Woodstock Festival and the biggest of all, Wacken Open Air 3 day Metal Fest.

And what about Skid Row fans State side? No rest for Skid Row, they will be closing out 2013 with shows in Fort Worth, Texas and Houston and more shows to be announced after the New Year. So do yourself a favor, download New World Rebellion and check em out live. You will not be disappointed!