Uriah Heep Stockton Arc 28 Feb 2013

Uriah Heep Stockton Arc 28 Feb 2013
Support: Virgil and the Accelerators
programme Went along to Stockton Arc with my mate Norm to see the mighty Uriah Heep last night. Support came from new up and coming blues rock power trio Virgil and the Accelerators who are fronted by a young ace guitarist. We only managed to catch the last couple of numbers of their set as a result of a detour to the Stag Inn, but were very impressed by what we saw. Virgil and Co are very much from the Cream/Taste/Hendrix mould and have been getting rave reviews, going down a storm everywhere they play. After a short wait Uriah Heep came on stage to a great reception from the packed house. The current Heep line-up has been stable for some time with front man, Heep main man and orginal guitarist Mick Box, longtime and great frontman singer Bernie Shaw, Phil Lanzon on keyboards and Russell Gilbrook on drums. Sadly Trevor Bolder is not able to join the band for this tour, as he has recently being undergoing treatment for cancer. The good news is that his treatment has gone well, and he is expected back in the band later this year. Bass duties are currently being handled very ably by JJ Jowitt. The set was a mix of new and old, with the usual favourites. I’ve seen Uriah Heep several times over the past 10 years or so, and they remain an amazing live act. All of the ingredients that brought them to the notice of rock fans in the 70s are still there; screaming harmonies, swirling organ, great powerful vocals, and very LOUD volume. For the encore some ladies from the audience were brought up on stage to dance to Free n Easy; which seems to be a regular feature of the set now. Stand-out tracks for me were Sunrise, Gypsy, July Morning, Lady in Black and Easy Livin’. heeparc Its strange to think that over 40 years have past since I first saw this band at Newcastle City Hall; I remember them announcing Easy Livin’ as their new single. As Mick Box said last night as he introduced Gypsy “where did all those years go?”. Mick was on fine form; his showmanship still continues to develop, as he waves his hand around and above the neck of his guitar, casting spells that cause the instrument to play itself (that probably doesn’t make sense, but if you see him play you’ll know what I mean). Great rock, great nostalgia, and still very powerful. Long may they continue to rock. Norm and I both enjoyed the concert. Uriah Heep left the stage around 11pm and we were back around 11.45pm. Setlist: Against The Odds, Overload, Traveller in Time, Sunrise, All My Life, I’m Ready, Between Two Worlds, Stealin’, Nail On The Head, Into The Wild, Gypsy, Look At Yourself, July Morning, Lady In Black. Encore: Free n Easy, Easy Livin’

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