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AIRBOURNE Live In Ottawa,Canada

By Andrew Depedro, Ottawa Corespondent
Monday, September 30, 2013 @ 7:54 AM


Aussie! Aussie! Aus-Some! AIRBOURNE And BLEEKER RIDGE Turn Mavericks Down Under And Upside Down In Ottawa, Canada, August 17, 2013

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For anyone who follows my blog on Facebook this would be an auspiciously similar concert review from 3 years ago when I saw both of these bands play to a full house at the newly-revamped Capital theater but didn't send the review off in time for it to get published. Nevertheless, the show at Mavericks contained all of the same elements from the last show I saw with both bands - good performances, unharnessed energy and songs about drinking.

And again I failed to heed my life lesson when attending a show by openers BLEEKER RIDGE: Arrive early before the entire population of their hometown of Orillia does. And they did yet again though the timing of their latest album Fouralong with their new single "Last Cigarette" becoming accessible to the general public just recently was going to draw a sizeable crowd anyway. And while their brand of heavy mainstream rock was often hit-and-miss for my tastes I still have to give BLEEKER RIDGE for working the crowd on songs like "Small Town Dead", "You Would've Liked It" and "Sick Of You" among other hits from their catalogue. And maybe it's just me but since the last time I've seen them excluding the guitarist most of the members actually look like true bonafide rockers now that they've grown their hair out some more.

https://www.facebook.com/BleekerRidge

Back in the touring game (like they've never been away) and my third time seeing them grace a stage and its surroundings would be Melbourne, Australia's four often shirtless wonders AIRBOURNE as they kickstarted their set with "Ready To Rock" which for them is more of a direct order than a song thus giving it more of an anthemic authenticity. With their third silver platter Black Dog Barking out, the band delivered the jams in fist-pumping beer-soaked style. And they had to have been at least semi-wasted if not completely wasted as they had done a radio slot with local rock station The Bear at The Beer Festival (located on the grounds of Ottawa City Hall - where Bluesfest was actually held for two summers in the mid-2000's), so for sure the energy was positively flowing. Sometimes there's not much to add to the solid chemistry of straight-up AC/DC-influenced rock 'n roll that AIRBOURNE accomplishes with such ease. In fact if you're frontman Joel O'Keefe you always raise the proverbial bar up a notch by rushing over to climb up on top of it during "Raise The Flag". It's still cool to watch no matter how often you've seen the band though for me their performance at 2010's Heavy MTL had Joel scale the stage's scaffolding at Parc Jean-Drapeau during the same song and solo at 100 feet in the air - with no support of any kind. Dangerous. But worth the risk.

And for further proof that not everyone in Canada are gormless Bieber-worshipping minions we did hand AIRBOURNE their first #1 debut album in the band's history and Joel was grateful to the Canadian public for givin' the Doga bone before launching into "Live It Up", one of three songs from the new disc that got played that night. Likely because with the longer amount of time it seems to take their fellow high voltage rock overlords AC/DC to release an album these days a void remains to be filled. And AIRBOURNE long since have risen to the challenge of filling that void though give Malcolm and Angus and company a few more years and they'll still be up for battle against the O'Keefe clan for the rights to the throne. Right now AIRBOURNE are in full-on throwdown mode and who says you can't teach an old Dog new tricks? Catch them when you can on this tour even if "Blonde Bad And Beautiful" gets left off the playlist despite requesting it for many bad, beautiful and blonde friends.

https://www.facebook.com/airbournerock

Setlist:

  • "Ready To Rock"
  • "Chewin' The Fat"
  • "Diamond In The Rough"
  • "Back In The Game"
  • "Raise The Flag"
  • "Cheap Wine & Cheaper Women"
  • "Black Dog Barking"
  • "Live It Up"
  • "Too Much Too Young Too Fast"
  • "Runnin' Wild" (with a bit of BLACK SABBATH's "Paranoid" tossed into the mix)
  • "Stand Up For Rock 'N Roll"


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