What a history Duff McKagan has had! Guns N’ Roses and Velvet Revolver to name the biggest two and of course who we’re here for tonight, Loaded. There’s also a lot of excitement around Danko Jones, the hyperactive and hilarious Canadian rocker, playing support.
The band of the same name is lead by singer / guitarist Danko Jones and when I say lead, I mean he was in charge of the entire room. Charisma just explodes out of this guy and he had everyone in the palm of his hand straight up. With songs that are “either about girls or being on the road”, Jones along with John Calabrese (bass) and Atom Willard (drums) are a rock machine. Numbers like I Think Bad Thoughts, Full Of Regret and First Date don’t muck around and punch straight for the face.
There were loads of hecklers, but all with Jones invitation and in the name of fun; with one punter referring to Jones as a “motherf**ker. Then it was opened up to a Gershwin sized discussion that there are two types of mutherf**kers and Jones was indeed the good kind, so thankfully, all was ok.
By the end of the set everyone had become diehard fans and can’t wait for Danko Jones to come back to Australia on their own headline tour. Though it may be for the comedy festival as much as for the music!
“We waitied a long time to get down to Melbourne!”
Loaded instantly make you feel like your rockin out in some seedy L.A. dive in the late ‘80s, though they’ve got more balls in their sound than that. No bullshit sweaty rock n’ roll here! Lead by singer / guitarist Duff McKagan, he played with the confidence of a home town hero, and the room let him know this is exactly where he belongs. One shall we say slightly obsessed fan Jay, definitely agreed. He ploughed right through the crowd to the stage holding up McKagan’s 2011 autobiography exclaiming he was God and it was the bible!
The highlight of the night was when Duff swapped his six string with bassist Jeff Rouse. Out came Danko Jones and the band rocked the hell out of the Guns N’ Roses classic You’re Crazy. McKagan is a talented multi instrumentalist and sharing the vocal with Jones made it like a freight train exploding out of the speakers.
The chemistry between the two was amazing and it’d be great to see both bands work on a collaboration in the future.
A perfect line up that played hard tonight and Danko Jones are the perfect opener; they put the crowd in a good mood and get them pumped. Though at the same time a lot of bands might be too scared to have them open as they’re a headliner themselves and would easily over shadow most. Luckily Duff McKagan’s Loaded can hold their own and also completely impressed! One of the best side waves this year for sure.
Duff McKagan’s Loaded set list:
So Fine (Guns N’ Roses)
Lords of Abbadon
You Can’t Put Your Arms Around a Memory (Johnny Thunders)
Patience (Guns N’ Roses)
You’re Crazy (Guns N’ Roses) (with Danko Jones)
Dust N’ Bones (Guns N’ Roses)
It’s So Easy (Guns N’ Roses)
All photos by Anthony Moore