THE WINERY DOGS
The Chameleon Club – Lancaster, PA
August 4, 2013
Review by Marcy J Royce
It was not just another one of those shows. You know, the show where you walked in and knew what the night sorta would be like. I walked into The Chameleon Club in Lancaster, PA with a completely open mind to this new powerhouse group dubbed THE WINERY DOGS.
When I told friends I was going to check out this new trio, they thought “oh yeah, you like wine and you like dogs… that’s why you’re going.” Well, not exactly. You see, I’m a child of 80’s and 90’s music and when you place these three heavy hitters in one solid band, it’s bound to be a match made in heaven. Yep, it sure was for me! The chemistry of Mike Portnoy of Dream Theater, Billy Sheehan of Mr. Big, and Richie Kotzen of Poison/Mr. Big was completely revealed by the end of their set.
Their new self titled cd was released on July 23, 2013. And a tour followed suit to show how much these guys are going to grab the industry by the balls and rip up the stereotypes of their peers. THE WINERY DOGS jumpstarted their grip to visit the masses in July overseas. U.S. fans were rabid for them to return to our soil. When they did, the first place to feel the froth was New York City at the famed B.B. Kings. I knew some people who saw that show and had nothing but accolades for their performance. So I was ready to have my choker chain yanked by them.
As I readied myself to photograph these guys, the crowd and myself began to get really eager for the set to kick off with the stellar song, Elevate. Don’t for one darn minute let your mind think that these veterans of the stage would act their age. Sheehan was energetic and entertaining, smiling and engaging with the crowd constantly. Kotzen belted lyrics like they were home runs all the while nailing each note on his guitar. And Portnoy, well… Portnoy is Portnoy. If you know drummers you know what Portnoy can deliver. Hard hitting, solid delivery, high energy are key elements of what made me take notice early on. Portnoy also had superb engagement with fans this night from the first level all the way to the third level. With these three, the bark and the bite are equally enthralling.
These guys performed all the tracks from their debut album this night. That is what shined the most, the innovative presentation and the radio deserving songs that are sure to become quick hits. It’s raw, pure and exceptional rock and roll at its finest. No matter if the song was slow or fast tempo, each one left you toe tapping and head bopping leading you to want more and more. This is what true rock and roll is all about! All the songs left such an impression on me that I just couldn’t wait to listen to their cd again on my way home. The stage was set simplistically with their gear, a watered down version as to what I’m sure they are accustomed. All that doesn’t matter when you blend these three genre leaders into this group. The technical superiority just takes center stage. While the lighting is not impressive at this venue, I captured the essence of each member. Check out my photos: THE WINERY DOGS Photos
As I traveled home listening to their cd, I paired my visual memory of the show with each track I heard. A joy to relive the entire night. I’ve reviewed and photographed many bands in my last few years with away-team.com and I can honestly say that THE WINERY DOGS are in my top 5 bands to go see again and again. I say with conviction they are the remedy to what needs to be in today’s music. Melding past with present, lyrically and musically. A strong backbone fused with melodical mastery.
I already know that they are booked on the 2014 Monsters Of Rock Cruise. And I just know, without a single doubt in my mind, this tantalizing trio WILL BE the group that everyone will be talking about. But why wait until next year??? Check their schedule for the city nearest to you AND GO!!! Case in point: I have a friend in radio and she and I were talking about this show and she told me a venue near her inquired to her about these guys. Asking her what her opinion was about them, could he get enough people to fill his place. Emphatically I exclaimed “HELL YES!” She asked her listeners via Facebook if they would attend THE WINERY DOGS show. An overwhelming amount said yes. This may very well be the beginning of a “Dog Domination.” (They can quote me on that in the future, lol).
Setlist for Lancaster:
We Are One
One More Time
Six Feet Deeper
The Other Side
You Saved Me
Stand (Poison cover)
You Can’t Save Me
Shine (Mr Big Cover)
I’m No Angel
Fooled Around & Fell In Love (Elvin Bishop Cover)
Watch Elevate video:
Buy their cd at:
The Winery Dogs on Amazon
A huge thank you to my gal Amanda for this opportunity involving me and the away-team. She’s my go-to gal for so much.