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LIVE: Slash ft Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators @ Resorts World Arena

No faff, no fuss, just pure unadulterated rock and roll! 

UNFILTERED ROCK AND ROLL IN THE TRUEST FORM, SLASH FEATURING MYLES KENNEDY AND THE CONSPIRATORS hit Birmingham’s Resorts World Arena in celebration of their ‘The River is Rising’ world tour. 

There has never been a different incarnation of Slash (Guns N Roses, Velvet Revolver, even his skit with Mr Gosling), he’s always been authentically himself; adorned with that infamous top hat and those ‘cool-guy’ glasses. Now cue the lights and the eerie sounds of John Carpenter’s The Thing, Slash waltzes onto stage exactly as he has done for decades, with frontman Myles Kennedy, and band The Conspirators in tow. 

Tour title-track The River is Rising kicks off the show; a four-minute sleazy stadium anthem with darkly seductive rolling guitars, and Myles’ showcase of rich vocals that make this one of the collaborations of the century. While the absence of pyro and elaborate stage props may seem unusual for a stadium show, the decision to keep the setup simple allowed the exceptional talent on stage to shine without distraction - some may argue it lacked but that was far from the case.  

The stage resonated with the immense vocals of Alter Bridge's own Myles Kennedy, commanding the performance effortlessly. Across the two-hour set, Kennedy effortlessly delivered powerful wails, establishing himself as a legendary performer and long-time collaborator of Slash. Their partnership shone brightly, particularly evident in their first collaboration, Starlight – a hauntingly beautiful ballad that led the audience on an emotional journey with its soaring choruses, evocative riffs, and soulful delivery, leaving the crowd spellbound and highlighting the enchanting synergy between the two.

It was an electrifying blend of blues-infused rock and roll, where the quintet effortlessly delivered both hard-hitting anthems and soulful ballads. Songs like Apocalyptic Love and Back From Cali showcased their mastery of bluesy licks and spine-tingling riffs, while Bent To Fly encapsulated the passion and deep-seated love they hold for their craft. Each member on stage was a storyteller, guiding the audience through a wild journey with gritty riffs and adrenaline-fueled anthems that demanded attention, as heard in tracks like Halo and Wicked Stone.

The connection between the music maestros was enigmatic, and the musicianship across the entire band was razor-sharp. Guitarist Frank Sidoris showcased his versatility, not only contributing to The Conspirators but also joining openers Mammoth WVH. In a nostalgic moment, they revisited 1991 with Guns N' Roses' Bad Apples, where Todd Kerns, bassist for Slash, delivered a swaggering performance that rivalled Axl's snarls. Kerns then took the lead vocals for a soulful yet raw rendition of Lenny Kravitz's Always on the Run - a bluesy, seductively sweet anthem which he executed flawlessly.

Nowadays, there's just one individual who can effortlessly weave a guitar solo across the span of three songs, and that's none other than Slash himself. Yet, despite this, every gaze remained fixed upon the fretboard he mastered so skilfully, everyone mesmerised by his commanding presence. Not a single word was uttered until he graciously thanked the audience before the encore, extending his gratitude to the "leader of the band," Myles Kennedy.

World On Fire marks the finale before that impatient wait where we all long for just ‘one more song’. And they obey the request with not one but two tracks. They hit us with something different to begin with, an emotionally charged rendition of Elton John’s Rocket Man - a performance that would surely make the man himself proud. Transitioning from rock stars to storytellers, Slash takes his place at the pedal steel while Kennedy delivers his most heartfelt performance of the night, captivating the audience with raw emotion.

Then it was time, the end was nigh as Slash teased the beginning of Anastasia, a song destined to become a classic in the years ahead. It was blistering, it was electrifying, and I have no doubt that if the building's infrastructure were weaker, the roof would have collapsed under the sheer energy. Arms raised, beers tipped, and screams erupt from a crowd filled with youth and time. It stood as a testament to the enduring force of rock and roll, binding every individual in that room together that night. The unparalleled talent between two icons who continue to defy limits, igniting a fire within everyone on that Saturday evening in the Black Country - the birthplace of rock and roll - and proved that rock and roll is still very much alive and kicking! 

Words: Tate Powell (@tatepowellx)


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