Last year the Dan Reed Network released their first studio album since The Heat in 1991.
Formed in Portland, Oregon, the Dan Reed Network witnessed a rapid rise to fame in the eighties and early nineties. During this time the band had hit singles both at home in their native US, as well as overseas.
The band travelled the globe opening for the likes of Bon Jovi on their 1989 â€œNew Jersey Tourâ€ and The Rolling Stones on their European â€œUrban Jungle Tour”. The latter of which included a show at the nearby St James’ Park in Newcastle and many of those in attendance that day are here again tonight.
However, despite their great success during this time, the Dan Reed Network disbanded following the release of their third album, which up until that point was their most successful UK release. The group became somewhat disillusioned with the music industry, much to the disappointment of their loyal supporters.
In 2012, the band played their 25th-anniversary reunion show on New Years’ Eve. As they say, time heals all wounds, and the now reinvigorated Dan Reed Network return with a new album Fight Another Day and a headline tour in support of their latest offering.
The anticipation for tonight’s show in Newcastle being so high that it was the first show of the band’s current UK tour to sell out, with all tickets for this date being long since snapped up. The room is packed to the proverbial rafters and it doesn’t take long for it to get hot and sweaty. Reed stating how happy he is to receive all of this love from Brian Johnson’s hometown.
During the course of the show, the Dan Reed Network deliver a nice balance of both new material and old classics, with only a few tracks from their latest album Fight Another Day included in the set. These include the likes of the incredibly infectious “Give It Up”, the politically charged “Divided” and melodic number “Champion”.
The band very quickly establish a connection with the room. Between almost every song, the audience are asked ‘what do you want to hear next?’. Of course, the fans shout out the likes of “Rainbow Child” and “Baby Now I”, and they happily oblige. The latter of which turns into quite an epic, as the band experiment and have fun with the track. Each member, in turn, segues a cover song like “Purple Haze”, “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” and “Smoke On The Water” into the mix.
Reed constantly engages the audience throughout; various fans catch his eye during the show and often he gives them the chance to sing along into his microphone. Guitarist Brion James delivers some blistering fretwork; whilst the rhythm section of Melvin Brannon II, drummer Dan Pred and Keyboard player Rob Daiker lay down a funky groove all night long.
The inclusion of the huge sounding “Resurrect” seems to have a dual meaning tonight. You just have to take one look at the stage, you see a band who is enjoying every moment of this ride, they have a new lease of life. Each member of the group is beaming from the stage throughout.
The band closes out their main set with the fan favourite “Tiger In A Dress” and funky rendition of “Get To You”, before returning for a duly deserved encore of “Stronger Than Steel”. As the band leaves the stage to rapturous applause, you get the feeling that given the chance they would have played all night long.
On the strength of tonight’s performance, you would be hard pushed to see a better show this year. The Dan Reed Network are most certainly back with a bang.
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Event Date: 07-MAR-2017