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Tesla Mechanical Resonance Live- Album Review

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Mechanical Resonance Live- Album Review

I have always had a bit of an affinity with Tesla and can proudly say that I was a member of a band that supported them way back in 1987. I, however wasn’t there, as I joined the band in question a couple of years after the Marquee gig in question. However my long term friend and band mate Matt Pearce, now of Voodoo Six (amonst others), was there and only had good things to say of the experience.

I always felt a little for the Tesla boys, as they were saddled with a glam rock label that they never liked or wanted, I think partly due to the fact that they went on tour with the likes of Dave Lee Roth, Deff Leppard and Poison. In my view these guys actually sat somewhere between AC/DC and Aerosmith, rocking riffs and the oh so distinctive vocals of Jeff Kieth all add up to much more than the critics ever gave them credit for. I get the feeling Tesla want to set the record straight this time around and how better than a live remake of the classic album ‘Mechanical Resonance’. How can it be that this album is 30 years old????

As I start the music playing ‘Rock Me to the Top’ takes me back 30 years to a time of heroes and idols, with riffs that can probably only make a near 50 year old feel like this. I can hear Bonn Scott, Steve Tyler, Angus Young and a shit load of 80’s memories, its the type of music that brings back smells and sounds of a time long gone. The recording is a little rough round the edges but thats what makes live bands so special, no autotune here!!!

The bass funky intro to ‘Ez Come Ez Go’ leads into some classic 80’s style riffin that is so evocative of a period of time, but ,for me, never ages! Its a style of rock music that I feel has been lost, the art of writing hooks that got the fans singing along. If I thought ‘Ez Come Ez Go’ was evocative of an era then what about ‘Getting Better’. The classic rock ballad intro leads us into yet more classic rock riffin goodness.   

I can’t help but feel that Tesla are making a very specific point by releasing this album, to go back to one of their classic records from 30 years ago and make a live version of said album is only for those most confindent in their music.  This made me curious, so I searched on YouTube to try and find a few recent live examples, I came across many examples from their 2015 tour, including ‘Modern Day Cowboy’, which appears on this album and although there is not the same agility with regards to stage moves, there is no doubting the musicianship and hunger to perform is still there in spades!

Little touches, like the piano intro to ‘Changes’, the little guitar licks in ‘Late 4 Love’, the oh so Aerosmith ‘We’re No Good Together’, the Southern Blues of ‘Save That Goodness’ not to mention the out and out rock goodness that is Tesla. If you’ve read any of my reviews in the past, you will have seen me write the word ‘honesty’ many, many times but how can it apply in this case. If the fact that these guys have been doing this in one form or another for the last thirty years does not prove just how honest and dedicated they are then what can!!!! If any new bands ever were to ask what they need to do to succeed, then they should look no further than bands like Tesla, who, despite being around for thirty years are still working their butts off.

Reviewer

Simon Larkin

REVIEW:

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