The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world Alice-Cooper-Perth-02-Oct-2011

“No More Mister Nice Guy” Tour
Challenge Stadium, Perth
2 October 2011

Words by Shane Pinnegar

Photos by Mark Diggins



The Vincent Price spoken intro to “Welcome To My Nightmare” favourite ‘The Black Widow’ pierces the Challenge Stadium darkness and the crowd roar – the master of metal macabre is back in town and when the curtain drops, there he is, eight armed Arachnid Alice, perched atop a tower waving a cane and spurting sprays of sparks from his outstretched hands.



It’s a thrilling opener, and what follows is a degustation menu chock full of treats for the diehards and the casual fans alike, complete with a three-guitar frontline featuring Alice’s first female and first Australian band member in blonde bombshell Orianthi.



Seventies and Eighties hits mingled with some relative obscurities such as the rarely played Eastern chug of ‘Halo of Flies’ and Gary Numan-esque electro of 1980’s ‘Clones (We’re All)’, delighting long term fans, and new song ‘I’ll Bite Your Face Off’ fit seamlessly into the setlist like a clawed hand into a tailor made glove.



At 63, the old maestro is lithe, sprightly and energetic, rarely pausing for a moment as he acted out set pieces such as bringing out his pet snake to writhe around his shoulders and head, and creating a “FrankenAlice” monster during ‘Feed My Frankenstein’.



Cooper’s voice is remarkable for a man of his vintage – alternately clear and soulfully resonating, and raw and powerful, and the varied setlist showed just how interesting this man’s body of work actually is.



No Alice Cooper show goes by without some pantomime blood, and ‘Wicked Young Man’ saw the slaying of a paparazzi stage invader, and the subsequent guillotine execution of our hero – all good family entertainment here, folks!



The band paid tribute to their “fallen” leader with ‘I Love The Dead’, then school bells heralded Alice’s resurrection for the ultimate party teen anthem ‘School’s Out’, featuring some hell-raising guitar work, singalongs to the inserted refrain from Pink Floyd’s ‘Another Brick In The Wall Part 2’, and Alice putting a dozen huge balloons to the sword, before leaving the crowd standing almost as one, stomping the floorboards for more, which they got in the form of a rousing run through ‘Elected’, complete with Australian flag and gold & green strip.



Alice Cooper practically invented the theatrical rock show, and some 45 years later in Perth he proved that he is still the undisputed champion, with a razor sharp band, a setlist that referenced most major periods in his career, and a show that is never a fraction less than supremely entertaining.


The Black Widow
Brutal Planet
I’m Eighteen
Under My Wheels
Billion Dollar Babies
No More Mister Nice Guy
Hey Stoopid
Is It My Body
Halo Of Flies
I’ll Bite Your Face Off
Muscle Of Love
Only Women Bleed
Cold Ethyl
Feed My Frankenstein
Wicked Young Man
I Love The Dead
School’s Out