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

Lillian Axe
The Viper Room, Los Angeles
4th July 2009

Arriving in LA just eight hours before, after a fifteen hour flight meant that after a couple of beers I was feeling just fine (until the jetlag kicked in). I’d never actually seen a band at the Viper Room before and like most of the clubs on the strip the first thing that hits you is how small it is. But it’s cool, very dark and let’s say cosy.

The bar staff at the Viper Room are legends. I’m here with Shane (who has already been in LA for a few days) though he’s off to see some punk band at the Roxy later as Lillian Axe are playing ROK later in the week. The girl behind the bar points me in the direction of four other Aussies who are over from Melbourne and also off to ROK! So we down a few more beers and watch a pretty good support (sorry guys my notes fail me there) and settle down for the Lillian Axe set.

I’ve been a fan of Lillian Axe for years, ever since I bought a copy of ‘Love and War’ back when it was released. I’d heard ‘Waters Rising’ from this new incarnation and whilst not blown over by that CD I liked what I heard. As I only just picked up ‘Sad Day’ at the merch stand tonight I wasn’t quite sure what to expect.

What we get is a great set of exceptional quality. The Viper room is packed and sweaty and there’s some sort of food thing going on in the darkness in the corner, but that aside…

From the gentle instrumental opener ‘Cocoon’ we’re suddenly into ‘Crucified’ from the classic ‘Psychoschizophrenia’ album. That is swiftly followed by two newies in ‘The Grand Scale of Finality’ and “Jesus Wept’; both of which sound great at the first time of hearing.

The new stuff is certainly more dark and brooding, but still very melodic; and when they get to ‘Megaslowfade’ (my favourite new song) after a barrage including: ‘All’s Fair in Love and War’; ‘Ghost of Winter’ and ‘Dream of a Lifetime’; I am already certain that the ‘Sad Day’ CD will be a classic.

The rest of the set, which doesn’t really let up, is a good balance of new and old. For my first time seeing Lillian Axe it is a true compliment to say that I didn’t really feel a lull in the set or the crowd even for the newer songs.

There are many back catalogue songs they didn’t play tonight. But we do get ‘She Likes it on Top’; ‘Mercy’; ‘The Day That I Met You’; ‘Show a Little Love’ and ‘True Believer’ . No matter how many times I asked for ‘Living in the Grey’ or my personal favourite ‘Dying to Live’ I didn’t get either but I did get a few picks thrown at me for my trouble! Cheers Steve…

One of my favourite sets of the 2009 US trip which is saying something as I saw 63 bands in total! I look forwards to catching more of Lillian Axe in the future.