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Born in the late 60's, Chesy hails from a Welsh mining village with a long name and was pretty glad when he got the Hell out of there. He got into Rock/Metal in about 1980, thanks to a TISWAS related incident (Rainbow video for All Night Long) and thankfully has never looked back. Chesy often sang solo in the school choir, but thanks to a puberty related incident his voice is now completely bolloxed, although in his own head Paul thinks he sounds like a blend of Coverdale and Dio (R.I.P). He was brought up on the classics - Deep Purple, Rainbow, Thin Lizzy, Rush, Whitesnake and loved melodic rock and the Hair Bands of the 80's. (Nowadays, he has progressed a little and prefers a more technical and/or progressive metal - Dream Theater, Rush, Symphony X, Porcupine Tree, Pain Of Salvation, Spock's Beard. He hates Black and Death Metal (can't stand the grunting) but for some unknown reason loves the magnificent Opeth! He wont stop this blog until his beloved FM finally play the likes of the NEC as a headlining act!!!

Saturday, 13 October 2018

Ross The Boss, Eleven, Stoke On Trent, 11.10.18



Having reviewed Ross The Boss ‘By Blood Sworn’ album a few months ago on this site, I was super-excited to be going along to see the guys live in what seemed to be (prior to getting there) a very intimate venue.

What a fantastic set-up ‘Eleven’ have. It’s intimate, personal, and a perfect size to watch and get close to the guys you’ve come to see. Prior to the gig, we were treated to a free ‘Meet & Greet’ session with Ross, as he gave out guitar picks, posed for photos, and was a general fantastic, friendly and loveable guy. He had some great stories to tell, and made sure he spoke to us all. Brilliant.
 
And that’s exactly what followed on stage. It was a very disappointing crowd of only around 40 people, but this did not stop the lads putting on a perfect and professional display of superb tunes, great crowd interaction and non-stop metal. Whether the capacity of 250 or the reality of 40 people, RTB performed no different and it was a night to remember. Performing Manowar classics, the gig kicked off with ‘Blood of the Kings’, followed closely by ‘The Oath’, and the guys seemed to be enjoying themselves as much as the crowd, drummer Steve Bolognese donning a constant beaming grin through each song. Brilliant to see.

Talk about making the most out of a challenging situation, Marc Lopez showed us all what an icon and presence he is on stage. Continuously moving, getting close to the crowd and getting everyone involved. As the band powered through classics such as ‘Sign of the Hammer’, ‘Hatred’, and ‘Blood of my Enemies’ it was clear as crystal what was going on here. Myself personally, I came to hear songs from RTB latest album ‘By Blood Sworn’, but the crowd were just revelling in the Manowar classics, and after this gig, I get it, totally. The tracks were played with such stunning power it was just too good, too, too good.
Next came ‘Kill With Power’ and ‘Each Dawn I Die’. 

What a singer Marc Lopez is. This current line up I believe is the best Ross has had. It just gels, especially live. ‘Hail to England’ got us all singing and is just an absolute stunner live. ‘Great Gods Glorious’, ‘Fighting The World’ and the absolutely stunning ‘Battle Hymn’ followed. The latter being one of my highlights of the night. Marc Lopez providing some superb vocals.
 
The guys finished with ‘Thor (The Powerhead)’ and the amazing ‘Hail and Kill’, with it’s almost 5 minute unreal blues jam. It’s been an absolute pleasure tonight seeing these guys bring such a huge show to the small stage, in a small venue, to a small crowd.
‘Hail and Kill’ tonight showed the strength and diversity of this band. My heart bleeds for them for such a small crowd. But tonight I will be so proud to be part of a bunch of people who got to see such an amazing band up close and personal. Next time, I’ll be there again. Hail & Salute RTB!! Thank you guys. xx




Score – 10/10

Reviewed by Sty

Setlist

Blood Of The Kings
The Oath
Sign Of The hammer
Hatred
Blood Of My Enemies
Kill With Power
Each Dawn I Die
Hail To England
Great Gods Glorious
Fighting The World
Battle Hymn
Thor (The Powerhead)
Hail And Kill

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