San Francisco Slash fans got a special treat in the form of a last-minute surprise performance by the legendary top-hatted axe man. Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators are currently on tour with Aerosmith, but due to an illness within the band, the Aerosmith camp was forced to cancel their show in Concord, California only 13 hours before the performance was scheduled to begin. Like any good seasoned road warrior would do, Slash decided to bring his show to the iconic Fillmore for an intimate evening of epic rock ‘n’ roll greatness.
The 20 song set was a perfect mix of Guns N’ Roses classics including “Night Train,” “You Could Be Mine,” and an epic, almost 20 minute version of “Rocket Queen,” as well as new songs from the forthcoming album World On Fire, including “Stone Blind,” “30 Years of Life,” and the title track.
Slash of course was in fine form as he flawlessly jammed on his familiar Les Paul while donning his signature top hat in front of a wall of custom Marshall amps. And frontman Myles Kennedy, where do I start? I have been a huge fan of this guy since he led the terribly underrated Mayfield Four back in the late ’90s. They released an album called Second Skin that very well may be my favorite rock album of all time—it’s a fucking masterpiece in every sense which got destroyed by a major record label.
I love the fact that Myles has found a home where he can truly shine, and that’s exactly what he did this night. This guy’s voice is flawless. He hit EVERY single note perfectly and made it look easy. I would guess there are maybe 5-10 singers on the planet that have the capacity or talent to sing like this.
When Myles sang the classic GnR songs, he kept a bit of Axl in there while adding his own flare, and quite honestly elevating the songs to a new level. The new songs from the upcomingWorld On Fire release sounded like a sonic boom of pure unadulterated rock ‘n’ roll which the radio community has been missing for years. This record cannot arrive soon enough for us starving for some over the top rock.
Another highlight of the night was Conspirator bassist Todd Kerns taking over the mic. This guy has the look and antics of a classic Sunset Strip veteran—even though he’s Canadian—and he pretty much owned half of the stage the entire night. He plays like a bat out of hell and sings like a cross between Blackie Lawless and Johnny Rotten taking over lead vocals on “Dr. Alibi” and “You’re Crazy.” (I only had two songs to come up with this comparison folks, but hopefully you get a sense.)
LA Fans pay attention as Slash and his band will celebrate the release of their new album World On Fire by returning to the iconic guitarist’s stomping grounds in Hollywood with a series of three, one-night-only club shows—September 23 (The Troubadour) and then, moving up the hill to the world-famous Sunset Strip, September 25 (The Roxy), and September 26 (The Whisky A Go Go).
Guitar Center will present Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators “Live From the Roxy” to be broadcast on national television via DIRECTV’s Audience Network
You’re a Lie
Standing in the Sun
Back from Cali
You Could Be Mine
Not for Me
30 Years to Life
No More Heroes
World on Fire
By the Sword
Sweet Child O’ Mine
World On Fire is due out September 16 on Slash’s own label, Dik Hayd International, distributed through Caroline. The group continues to preview songs for fans on their current summer tour with Aerosmith in addition to select solo dates. See all the dates right here.
*A version of this post originally appeared on www.thevinyldistrict.com by author and photographer Jason Miller.
Were you at the show at the Fillmore? Join the conversation in the comments below.