Great White – Club Infinity, Williamsville, NY – 06/04/2011

Review by John Jeffrey , Photos by Thomas S. Orwat, Jr.

Buffalo, NY – Great White’s show at Club Infinity proves that there is still a large percentage of the population that is not completely tuned into the internet, or who stay on top of the rock n roll ‘happenings,’ as the amount of people who were unaware of the fact that Jack Russell is currently not singing for the band was astounding.  This apparent ‘news’ was not received well, as there were even apparent complaints regarding Russell’s absence from people who purchased ‘meet & greet’ packages.  You would assume people paying extra money to meet the band, would be aware of who they are paying to meet?  I guess not.

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Great White hit the stage around 11pm, and rocked the house by starting the show with their classic, “Desert Moon.” Jack Russell’s temporary replacement, Terry Ilous, addressed the crowd, right after the first song, by letting everyone know that “Jack is pretty sick” and is “gonna be back soon.”  That being said, Ilous proceeded to put on a performance that won’t be easy to match, even for a fully recovered Russell.  Ilous’ youthful energy led veteran lead guitarist Mark Kendall, drummer Audie Desbrow, keyboardist/rhythm guitarist Michael Lardie, and bassist Scott Snyder through a set of classic and b-side Great White songs.  In our recent interview with Mark Kendall, he informed us that a few of the rarer songs they included in the set were made possible due to Ilous’ impeccable vocal range, songs that Jack Russell no long preferred to sing.

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Promoter Ross Catalino (Back to Back Entertainment) did a great job bringing in a huge crowd for Great White, as the near 500 people in attendance really enjoyed the opportunity to see such a quality national act, in a somewhat intimate nightclub setting.  The difference between seeing a band in an arena or outdoor shed, versus seeing them in a club, is being able to really feel the music.  In a place like Club Infinity, the sound is loud, but not too loud, and you really feel the vibe the band is putting out.  Taking in the show, I could really hear a lot of Great White’s musical influences.  While many people liken them to Led Zeppelin, I heard more nuances of Van Halen, AC/DC and ZZTop, especially during the little jam/break down parts of the show.

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By the end of the night, the entire crowd was won over by this ‘temporary’ version of Great White.  After the show, the main staff of had the opportunity to hang out with drummer Audie Desbrow.  Audie was sincerely taken aback by our compliments on the night’s performance, as he feels the band can only get better, once they have the opportunity play more concerts in succession, as they are currently only doing ‘one-off’ fly in gigs at the moment.  In closing, while many diehards pine for the return of Jack Russell, this version of the group puts on an amazing show, keeping Great White’s reputation of a quality live act securely intact.

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Set List:
Desert Moon
Lady Red Light
On Your Knees
Face the Day
House of Broken Love
Save Your Love
Mista Bone
All or Nothing
Big Goodbye
Back to the Rhythm
Rock Me

The Angel Song
Can’t Shake It
Once Bitten Twice Shy


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