August 13, 2013
Concert Review by Joseph Hett
LEOGUN Roars In Simpsonville
LEOGUN pounced into action on Tuesday night in Simpsonville, SC at the Charter Amphitheatre. They were opening for the “40th Anniversary Monster Tour” headlined by KISS.
The trio from London, England came out on the simplified stage, while the sun was making its way down.
They started up with “Let’s Be Friends,” a foot-stomping blazing tune. It was their debut single from last year.
LEOGUN is Tommy Smith (Guitar & Vocals), Matt Johnson (Bass) and Michael Lloyd (Drums). They were the first to be signed by Yamaha’s new North American label, Yamaha Entertainment Group.
Smith said, “It is Tuesday right? Well, let’s make this feel like a Friday or Saturday night.” And the crowd erupted. Their next song was “What’s It Gonna Take?” It was an extra heavy fast-paced Peter Gunn theme sounding song.
Smith possesses a vast vocal range and masterful guitar playing skills. He has the raw energy of a Jimmy Page and Robert Plant all rolled into one. The towering bass player’s, Johnson, stage antics could be compared to a young Krist Novoselic of Nirvana fame. Lloyd was a monster on the drums, while constantly wiping sweat from his shaved head due to the high humidity.
They slowly but surely entranced the audience by bringing their A-game. Once they got in a steady rhythm, the amplifiers were roaring.
A “LEOGUN” is said to be a mythological beast that is half-man, half-lion. This was evident throughout the set since Smith’s long mane was flowing with every head bang.
“We last played in South Carolina in Charleston. It wasn’t as big as this; we actually played ‘on’ the bar,” Smith jokingly said. They then cranked out “End Of The World” and the chugging tempo song called “Medicine.”
They played their newest single, “Piggy In The Middle.” It was extended to a jam session while Smith got the crowd to clap their hands to the rhythm.
They said they had time for one more and played “By The Reins,” a bluesy string-bending song. They finished and thanked the fans for their support. They then left the stage and went to meet and greet the fans at their merchandise table.
It was a very impressive abbreviated six-song set. They have a classic rock-n-roll sound with a modern component which will make them radio friendly. They will soon be known by the masses if they continue to write songs and perform like they do.
LEOGUN was much fresher than a cookie-cutter KISS show. They showed that new rock-n-roll has a bright future. By the next time LEOGUN comes to the area, they won’t be playing ‘on the bar’ or opening. They will be headlining.