Sunday, October 13, 2013

Alice Cooper at the Capitol Theater

Alice Cooper, born Vincent Furnier in 1948 in Detroit, Michigan, was every mother’s nightmare and every rebellious teenager’s idol in the early 1970s. His shock rock lyrics and concert theatrics, with a stage show that featured a huge boa constrictor, a straight jacket, an electric chair, a guillotine, fake blood and decapitated baby dolls, made for a macabre concert experience for legions of fans. Future bands, particularly Kiss, applied Cooper’s groundbreaking theatrics to good effect and Cooper’s popularity eventually waned. He is still recording and touring, however, and his 26th and most current album is 2011’s Welcome 2 My Nightmare.

Tonight at the Capitol Theater in Port Chester, New York, Cooper looked and sounded great for a 65-year-old rocker. The stage show was as fantastic as ever, with his trademark straight jacket, guillotine and other over-the-top horror imagery still part of the show. He sang “I’m Eighteen”, “School’s Out”, “Billion Dollar Babies”, “No More Mr. Nice Guy” and newer songs with the same snarly delivery of the past, and his present band, featuring three guitarists, may be his best band ever. The show rocked non-stop from beginning to end; there was no “Only Women Bleed” or any other ballads. Times have changed over the decades, however, and by today’s standards all the once-controversial antics now seemed tame. That did not make them any less enjoyable. Cooper is an outstanding showman and rocker.

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