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With a scheduled stop on their Like No Other Tour near me, there was no damn way I was going to miss a performance by supergroup The Dead Daisies.  What an opportunity and blessing to see rock legend Glenn Hughes (Deep Purple, Black Sabbath) and such a solid talented band perform in an intimate theater size venue.  The band is currently touring after releasing their highly praised album, Holy Ground.  This new album is easily in my top 5 rock albums of the year.  It’s a kick-ass melodic hard rock record overflowing with quality songs, great riffs, and highlighted by Hughes iconic powerful bluesy booming vocals.  

The Dead Daisies are basically an all-star project with a revolving door of famous musicians rotating in and out of the band.  Along with Hughes (who came aboard after John Corabi left in 2019), the current lineup is the amazing Doug Aldrich (Dio, Whitesnake), drummer Tommy Clufetos (Ted Nugent, Rob Zombie, Ozzy Osbourne, Black Sabbath), and Australian guitarist and band mastermind David Lowry who founded The Dead Daisies in 2012.

To warm up the eager Ramona Mainstage concertgoers, a trio out of Tempe, Arizona The Black Moods got things off to a great start.  They connected with the audience right away with smiles and delivered a big distorted bluesy sound armed with energetic melodic songs.  Their latest single “Sunshine” hit the Top 20 Billboard Active Rock charts.  At first listen, my favorite song was “Bad News” which I later learned was released in 2018.  Check out The Black Moods and get in a great mood enjoying a fresh new generation of rock and roll.  

Next up was a comedian Don Jamieson, familiar to many rock fans for his stint on the popular VH1 Classic heavy metal music talk show hosted by Eddie TrunkThat Metal Show. Don had the entire crowd belly laughing for 30 minutes with mostly non-P.C. rock themed humor; “Should a band as old as KISS really be singing “Christine 16” at this point in their career? Let’s have them sing about women their own age like maybe “Mildred 73” [rim shot]!" Not many comedians can pull off opening for rock bands, but Jamieson is a perfect fit in this setting – good stuff!  

Then it was Daisies time and these rock veterans dished out a master clinic in live rock and roll.  The band’s playful chemistry, amongst themselves on stage and with the audience, made it clear that these guys were genuinely appreciative to just be out playing again.  Their positive energy translated into a great performance.  The setlist was justifiably dominated by many outstanding songs from their latest album Holy Ground. Hearing these new tracks live and loud with the dual Aldrich/Lowry guitars blazing riff after riff, Clufetos bashing like a beast on drums and Glenn “The Voice of Rock” Hughes in prime legendary form was just a special rock experience I won’t’ soon forget. 

A highlight of the show was Hughes’s incredible performance covering his former band Deep Purple’s bluesy dramatic ballad “Mistreated”.  The song featured an amazing soulful acapella section where Hughes’ voice truly captured the painful heartache and sorrow of being left by a woman and now losing his mind.  They say, “When the pain penetrates the music resonates”. Indeed – Don’t make me cry Glenn, damn that was some heavy passionate shit!  

Bringing the show to a climax, the band again reached into Hughes’ Deep Purple pedigree by exploding into the fast and furious “Burn”.  It was the perfect fast adrenaline anthem to close it out.  As I exited the theater grinning ear to ear, I overheard a female enthusiastically proclaim, “That was fucking awesome!”. The guy next to her boldly replied, “They’re the greatest band alive!”.  Check out The Dead Daisies Holy Ground album, it’s a winner, and look for more U.S. touring dates in 2022.

Rock on and be well!

Greg Vitalich


Greg Vitalich

Photojournalist - San Diego

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