In a recent interview I read that Chester Bennington said the Kings of Chaos aren’t a supergroup but given the caliber of musicians that took the stage this week at The Paramount in Huntington NY, most would disagree.
This non-supergroup features a rotating alumni of musicians that include a who’s who of rock and roll. Past members have included everyone from Guns N’ Roses (but Axl), Gene Simmons, Steven Tyler, Corey Taylor and the list goes on and on.
Recently the Kings played some shows on the west coast and rolled it into a string of east coast dates. For these shows the lineup has been far from disappointing and has included Chester Bennington of Linkin Park/Stone Temple Pilots, Billy Duffy of The Cult, Steve Stevens of Billy Idol’s band and Robert DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots (also Talk Show, Army of Anyone and Delta Deep). In addition to these amazing artist Kings Of Chaos features Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and Chaos founder Matt Sorum, formerly of Guns N’ Roses/Velvet Revolver, on drums as well as fellow HOF members Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top and Robin Zander of Cheap Trick. I think It’s obvious from the lineup, and probably goes without saying, this show kicked ass.
Before the Kings even took The Paramount stage, the crowd was rocking thanks to Franky Perez and The Truth. Franky Perez may not be a household name but he’s an amazing vocalist and has fronted numerous band like Scars on Broadway with members of System of the Down, Slash’s touring band, Camp Freddy (another all-star band), and most recently Apocalyptica. Perez came out from Vegas to open these shows, is well respected in the music community and even joined the Kings during their encore.
It was time for the Kings of Chaos!! Chester Bennington started off on vocals with ‘Vaseline’ from Stone Temple Pilots which he’s quite familiar with given his short stint with the band. He continued into Billy Idol’s ‘White Wedding’ and then The Cults ‘Firewoman’ before Robin Zander took over the mic. The hit fest continued with Cheap Tricks lead vocalist covering ‘Hello There’, ‘Surrender’ and ‘Want You To Want Me.’
As if having Chester and Robin wasn’t enough the crowd went crazy when Billy Gibbons came to the stage plugged in his guitar and ripped into ‘Waitin On The Bus’. He quickly followed that up with ‘Sharp Dressed Man’ and was rejoined by Robin to cover “Tush.’
What adds to the dynamic of a show like this is great showmanship. Throughout the two hour set each member was featured in some way for multiple songs, whether it be one from their own band, one of the other members bands or something total different. Billy Duffy, Steve Stevens, Billy Gibbons and even Robin Zander trading guitar licks, giving their own interpretations to guitar leads/solos as the originator stands next to and encourages them all the while being backed by the amazing rhythm section of Robert and Matt.
They slowed it down a bit as their crew brought forward some drums, stools and acoustic instruments for a little unplugged segment of the show. This acoustic set included Cheap Tricks power ballad ‘The Flame’, a classical guitar solo from Steve Stevens and Kings of Chaos versions of The Cult’s ‘Edie’, STPs ‘Interstate Love Song’ and ZZ Top’s ‘Jesus Just Left Chicago.’
Following the acoustic set Matt took a moment to address the crowd, thank them for coming and for helping to make his Kings of Chaos dream a reality. He then spoke of one of the people that inspired him (and many others), the one and only, Lemmy Kilmister, who the Kings paid tribute to by playing ‘Ace of Spades’ with Matt on vocals.
The show continued for about another hour and even with over 1000 people in attendance I can’t believe anyone left disappointed. I heard a couple of people saying they were surprised that no Linkin Park was played but that they still thought it was an amazing evening/set.
Although the evening was over for most I was able to go backstage and have the opportunity to hang out with the guys. Chester was busy watching the football game at first, Robin was ready to leave and I only saw Billy Duffy for about a minute. There was only 8-10 people there besides the band and seemed everyone wanted to talk to Billy Gibbons, myself included. Billy was the only one I hadn’t met and, in all honesty, he’s a musical legend, I mean how many people have had the honor to not only play with Jimi Hendrix but have him deem them, one of the best guitarists in the US.
Although this may not be Chester’s definition of a supergroup the evening was nothing but super, for those that attended. Not only are evenings like this rare but it was obviously a pleasure to meet Billy and even get a picture with him. I also had a few minutes with Matt who said it is definitely in his plans to get some original music recorded with the Kings of Chaos members in the future. Of course, since the band is ever changing, that album could feature just about anyone you can think of in the world of music.
The Kings of Chaos don’t do many shows but when they do, you won’t want to miss it so keep an eye on their website and facebook pages for a chance to see some of the biggest names in rock n roll. Here is the full set and a couple more pictures from The Paramount. 12/19/16, Huntington NY Show:
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