Bringin’ Out the Big ‘Guns’

REVIEW: VIPER ROOM’S APPETITE TRIBUTE SATIATES GN’R FANS

Last night, it felt like the Viper Room froze July 1987 in time. The GN’R tribute show was far superior to the show Axl Rose and his GN’R Part Deux gave at the Forum a few months back. The Room rocked with a great house band, the awesome Lonely Drunks Club Band (right) and six different singers from L.A.’s hottest local bands.

It was also very cool to spot members of our favorite L.A. band, Warner Drive, including frontman Jonny Law and bassist Elvis James, checking out the show.

In addition to the kick-ass Lonely Drunks Club Band, Brando’s Island (left) really stood out in the night’s multiband lineup and had the place groovin’ to a fantastic set of original tunes before frontman Brandon Wardell later grabbed the mic during the GN’R tribute for a couple more powerhouse performances.

Throughout the tight set of spot-on covers of classics like “Welcome to the Jungle” and “Sweet Child O’ Mine,” Wardell and the various singers chatted between songs about how GN’R’s major label debut changed their lives, including one who said he was 10 when the album dropped! Another mentioned that he was 12 when Appetite debuted! Doh!

Despite how great all of the Axl imitators were, it’s doubtful anyone on stage can remember what Rose looked like before the Botox and cornrows.

But they all perfectly captured W.A.R.’s vocal inflections, held the mic the same way, whipped their hair back and forth like him and, of course, when the band did “Paradise City,” the ENTIRE ROOM broke into the serpentine dance. It was a very cool, fun Spinal Tap-like experience.

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