Thunder - City Hall, Sheffield, Saturday, March 18th 2017
Set List: No One Gets Out Alive/Enemy Inside/River Of Pain/Resurrection Day/Right From The Start/Backstreet Symphony/Higher Ground/In Another Life/The Thing I Want/Don’t Wait For Me/Rip It Up/Love Walked In/I Love You More Than Rock ‘N’ Roll.
Encore: Wonder Days/There’s Always A Loser/Dirty Love.
Thunder are back, four fifths of the original line up formed 26 years ago return with a new album ‘Rip it Up’ and a sold out UK tour, here we are second night in Sheffield.
Danny Bowes, white of hair may look like a Geography teacher but when he sings there is no mistaking THAT voice! The raw bluesy rock voice powers through, dripping with emotion and silky quality.
Opening up with new album opening track ‘No one gets out alive’ they have a powerful sound, the lead guitar work of Luke Morley weaves the melody for the fairly standard rocker backed up by the solid rhythm of Ben Matthews on guitar and Chris Childs on bass, drummer, Harry James completes the groove.
More new songs follow, cockney Danny Bowes greets the crowd with “Alright Sheffield”, before the catchy ‘River of Pain’. With the crowd having been warmed up it was time to slow it down with the new album’s ballad ‘Right From The Start’ showcasing Danny’s impressive vocals, gentle and melodic in the verse before raw bluesy in the chorus; as mentioned Luke Morley’s sterling guitar work is evident in the guitar solo - surely one of the best UK guitarists today?
‘In Another Life’ had similarities to Alannah Myles’s ‘Black Velvet’ with its funky bass line and keyboards(courtesy of Ben Matthews doubling up on duties). The powerful and soulful ‘Don’t Wait For Me’ was first of the oldies from ‘Backstreet Symphony’ debut album, followed by Danny Bowes asking the crowd, “Do you know the words? Why don’t you sing them?”
They certainly knew the next song ‘Love Walked in’ which got a rousing cheer and a singalong, and sounded excellent and got an extended guitar break when Danny Bowes encouraged the crowd to cheer for Luke Morley to play more. Thunder surely are the best UK rock guitar band on the scene and long may they continue bringing out quality music.
By John Mather