The Rival Sons Free a Furious and Ferocious Brand of Rock ‘n’ Roll at the Fillmore

15:11 September 30, 2019
By: Donald Rickert

The Rival Sons appeared with the Stone Temple Pilots this Sunday at the Fillmore inside of Harrah's.

The Rival Sons have a throw back sound that is reminiscent of classic rock bands of legendary fame without sounding like a poor facsimile (e.g. Greta Van Fleet vis-à-vis Led Zeppelin). In fact, lead singer Jay Buchanan is a true throwback and a 21st century amalgamation of yesteryear's iconic front men and lead singers. He is equal parts Robert Plant, Ronnie Van Zant, Jim Morrison, and Roger Daltrey with at least three fingers of Free era Paul Rodgers thrown in on top. Even though Buchanan looks and sounds like these rock 'n' roll legends, from hooking his thumb in his pocket while holding the mic cable like Plant did, to his shoulder length hair resembles Morrison's in the late 60s, to sporting large chop sideburns like Roger Daltrey did at one time, he pays homage without treading into the precarious waters of being a blatant carbon copy. Buchanan is truly original, and, by being so, is both charismatic as a performer and impressive as a singer.

At one point in the set, right before the band broke into "Where I've Been," Buchanan told the audience that the song was about forgiveness-that you should be able to forgive yourself. At this point, Buchanan channeled a mixture of a religious revival preacher, knowing wise man, as well as a rock 'n' roll showman.

Scott Holiday made his presence known on guitar, too. Switching seamlessly from playing with and without slide, Holiday ripped without being self indulgent-everything he played fit nicely with the songs. Whether it was "Electric Man" from Great Western Valkyrie or "Keep On Swinging" from Head Down, the band played as a singular unit. The foundation was set by Mike Miley on drums and Dave Beste on bass. The group was rounded off with Todd Ögren on keyboards. All together, the Rival Sons presented a unified front-at the Fillmore to unleash a fury of frantic and ferocious rock 'n' roll that was indeed impressive.

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