“Now we’re going to go old school,’ Steven Tyler screeched before Aerosmith kicked into ‘What It Takes,’ which was recorded in 1989.
That’s hardly old school for a band that formed in 1970. There are a couple of versions of Aerosmith. There was the 1970s Aerosmith, which produced lean, raunchy blues-based rock. The band’s first five albums are full of loose, fiery, dirty, guitar-driven tunes.
The post-rehab version of Aerosmith is a clean, polished brand of pop-rock that lacked the sneer of its salad days but it propelled the quintet to the top of the charts during the late ‘80s.
There was plenty of the latter during the band’s soldout show Friday night at Revel. ‘What It Takes,’ ‘Ragdoll’ and ‘Dude (Looks Like a Lady’) pleased the casual, pop fans.
There were some inspired old school runs. Aerosmith kicked off the show with the classic boogie of ‘Mama Kin.’ The deep album cut surprise of the night was the catchy but buried gem, ‘No More No More’ and the funky ‘Last Child’ was satisfying as well.
But when Aerosmith thinks old school, you get the superfluous drum, guitar and bass solos, which are best left in the memories of fans, which experienced the band back at the late Spectrum. If Aerosmith mined its vintage catalog a little more, it would only enhance the set.
Tyler remains one of rock’s finest frontmen. The diminutive Tyler is still animated, energetic and a provocative vocalist at 64. His ragged set of pipes impressed, particularly during ‘Walk This Way’ and ‘Train Kept a Rollin.’
Guitarist Joe Perry is still formidable and the remainder of the band plays like a group that has primarily been together for more than 40 years. The handful of new tunes from Aerosmith’s latest album, ‘Music From Another Dimension’ the band played in Atlantic City are decent rockers, particularly the cuts penned by Perry.
The only issue is that the long of tooth Aerosmith fans and the pop loving fans, who wished the band played ‘Angel’ in AC can care less about fresh material.
How great would it be if the band did a tour purely of ‘70s songs but I guess we’ll just have to ‘Dream On’ since that won’t happen.