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Lynch Mob play The Rockpile Club
Toronto, Canada June 6, 2015

To nobody's surprise there was much anticipation surrounding the return of ex-Dokken guitar god, George Lynch, to Canadian shores with the current incarnation of his solo project Lynch Mob. The tour also boasted the return of Oni Logan, the original lead vocalist, reprising his role as frontman to the band.

For two consecutive nights, George's Lynch Mob lay waste to The Rockpile club in the far west of Toronto with an incredible set of their best material. They were supported by six various opening acts, three on either night. I was fortunate enough to attend Saturday's show thanks to a good friend and connoisseur of all things George Lynch.

The three talented acts that preceeded Lynch Mob's performance that night were (in order of appearance) Wildheart, Darkstone Crows and Three Quarter Stone – all local acts. Sadly my slightly tardy arrival resulted in me missing my first opportunity to catch Wildheart live, but my editor (who was also present that night) assured me that this classic rock inspired act delivered a top notch performance of richly textured original material performed faithfully to the recordings. I'm sorry to have missed them, but there's always the next time.

Up next were the energetic young Darkstone Crows, a sort of soulfully melodic Nu-Metal act who's punchy material hit the crowd like an atom bomb. Still quite a young act, I have high hopes for this eclectic ensemble. On the other end of the spectrum were the equally entertaining rock'n roll verterans Three Quarter Stone. Somewhere between The Cult, Led Zepplin and The Allman Brothers Band (or perhaps Gov't Mule would be more fitting) – these rockers float in that metropolitan southern rock vibe. Their songs are straight to the point and very catchy. Do be (Doobie?) sure to catch them live.

As much as I'm game to check out fresh young talent and the local underdogs, it's always a rush when the main event hits the stage. George and the boys entered from stage right plain and simple. No fancy entrances, no unnecessary pretenses, just four guys ready to put on the best show possible, blow the roof off the joint and have fun in the process. It's been just over 20 years (that's right) since I first saw the Lynch Mob play. It was at the Danforth Music Hall and the opening act was the uniquely interesting LSD (Life Sex Death). I believe Robert Mason was singing for the band at that time. Having now witnessed Oni Logan in action live I can say without a doubt that he is clearly the better fit when it comes to virtuosity, presence and personable charm. He even sang "Happy Birthday" to an audience member!

The chemistry on stage was electric as the band kicked off their set with "She's Evil But She's Mine" from Wicked Sensation (1990). The following song ("River of Love") and another shortly after ("Hell Ride") were also from their first album (still deemed their best by popular opinion), but I really enjoyed their performance of the more recent "Believers of the Day", a personal favorite of mine from their 2014 album Sun Red Sun.

"It's been just over 20 years (that's right) since I first saw the Lynch Mob play."

Although the setlist did seem to favour material that was either very old or very current, they did manage to squeeze in a track from 2009's Smoke and Mirrors "Let the Music Be Your Master". My friend assured me that this was the only additional song to the previous night's set. So, while they may be sticking to specific crowd pleasers, there is always that wiggle room for the unexpected – something to look forward to for those venues/cities still ahead on this tour.

Fear not though, all you faithful Lynch supporters from the days of yore, the set is generously weighted with Dokken hits from Tooth and Nail and Under Lock and Key that will magically transport any diehard fan back to the mid-eighties. Of course what evening with George Lynch would be complete without a heart-stopping rendition of "Mr. Scary" following an electrifying, satisfying and expertly composed guitar solo that did not overstay it's welcome. Also note-worthy was the unexpected but well recieved rhythm section instrumental that preceeded said guitar solo, adding further delight to the evening's festivities. Add bassist Sean McNabb and drummer Jimmy D'Anda to the list of the evening's lineup of talent.

It was nice to hear George speak to the audience here and there throughout the show. He's a soft spoken, yet very funny individual with a natural warmth in his intonation, and it was a treat to hear him reflect fondly about the recording of the Sound Mountain Sessions EP as well as the upcoming album for 2015 Rebel.

They closed their set with the title track from "Wicked Sensation", and surprisingly there wasn't an encore – nor were any intended. But aside from that it was an excellent evening's entertainment. The sound quality was impeccable; I could actually hear the following day, no ringing in my ears at all! A solid performance by Lynch Mob and all the supporting bands. The Rockpile is always a great venue for an up-close and intimate performance, and this was no exception. Be sure to catch George Lynch and the boys at the nearest venue to your city!

Richard Leggatt, HMS

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