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Guitar Rock And Rolls Through Oklahoma City
Alter Bridge / Mammoth WVH / Pistols At Dawn The Criterion Oklahoma City, OK March 15, 2023 Photo by Vernon L. Gowdy III

Pistols At Dawn, a hard rock band out of Atlanta, Georgia, opened a night of energetic rock a six-song set, led by a guitar solo in tribute to the late, great Eddie Van Halen. Their songs spanned three albums, including Ascension, their latest effort. Displaying great stage presence, the band members, Chris Hodges, Adam Jaffe, Devin White, Sean Benham and Devin James, made their presence felt.

Mammoth WVH then hit the stage and Wolfgang Van Halen and his touring band made the most of their 45-minute set. Frank Sidoris, Jon Jourdon, Ronnie Ficarro and Garrett Whitlock, all members of prominent groups, played several songs from Mammoth, the debut album for Mammoth WVH. Distance, an emotional tribute to Wolfgang's father, Eddie, was well received. It included a shout-out to Wolfgang's fiancee, Andraia Allsop, who was celebrating her birthday as he declared, "I'm going to marry that woman!" The much-too-short set ended with Don't Back Down, a bluesy-hard rocker that left the crowd wanting more.

Alter Bridge, supporting their latest album, Pawns And Kings, came out swinging. Myles Kennedy, Mark Tremonti, Brian Marshall and Scott Phillips have coalesced into a strong rock band and displayed that for their entire set. The 16 songs they played were teeming with energy and covered their three albums they have made.

An especially poignant moment came mid-set with Kennedy performing solo with just an acoustic guitar to perform, Watch Over You. Tremonti joined him to play, In Loving Memory, on acoustic to accompany Kennedy's vocals. The moment was a pause of hard rock tunes, which they resumed to everyone's delight.

Kennedy, an amazing vocal powerhouse in the rock genre, and Tremonti, also a gifted singer, have developed a chemistry, along with the other two band members that makes their shows look effortless with seamless transitions and powerful exchanges. Those attributes, along with many other positive connections among the band kept the audience enthralled the whole time they were on stage. The cheering crowd begged for an encore and got it with Rise Today, always a fan favorite. The show had to end, but the fans left the venue content, happy and spent from the emotion and rock and roll prowess.

Look for this tour when it comes to town. It will be a night you will remember.

Alter Bridge
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Mammoth WVH
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Pistols At Dawn
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Author & Photographer: Vernon L. Gowdy, III
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