LOGAN (Live)

At The Carling Academy 2, Newcastle, U.K., July 20, 2008

Scotland’s self proclaimed number one Rock band have certainly made a lot of ground over the last year or so. After being courted by some of America’s biggest record labels they caught the eye of US band, Alter Bridge and landed the support slot on their recent hugely successful UK tour.

Back in June of this year New Jersey megastars Bon Jovi ran a competition to select a different opening act on each night of their UK stadium shows and Logan won a landslide victory in securing this prestigious slot in their hometown venue of Hampden Park in Glasgow. Despite the torrential rain and the bass speaker conking out towards the end of the set, their performance was a total triumph. Performing before the biggest crowd of their life Logan put on a display of supreme confidence winning over a whole new legion of fans in the process.

logan Having seen them succeed in front of the Hampden faithful, it was now the chance to see them in an altogether more intimate setting at Newcastle’s Carling Academy 2. Speaking to lead singer Kenny Collins and bass player Steve Reilly before the show it was clear that the band was brimming with confidence and up for putting on a performance to bring their UK tour to a triumphant end.

Being good to their word Logan were up and running with “Gone” before launching into “Stand To Reason” from their excellent self-financed Cruel Little World album.

The uninitiated in the crowd could be forgiven for having to rub their eyes and do a double take on seeing identical twins Steve and Al Reilly on stage together but each plays a pivotal role in the band with Steve providing the rock steady foundation of the rhythm section with drummer Iain Stratton while Al conjures up the riffs and solo’s alongside his fellow guitarist Mick Coll. Taking centre stage is Kenny Collins, the man with a huge yet totally melodic voice. In fact, Collins must rate as one of the vocal finds of recent years. It’s not often that one stumbles across someone with such a strong voice that can produce such melodic lines at the same time but Collins really can deliver.

logan Not only is he blessed with a damn fine voice but Collins also has a rather fine line in banter with the crowd. This isn’t big mouthed David Lee Roth style patter but more stand up comedian type. His great one liners and jovial stories about such wondrous topics as Incredible Hulk underpants really did get the laughs and warmed the atmosphere immeasurably.

Logan have been busy writing new material and wasted no time in sharing the fruits of their work with “Grounded” featuring a pounding AC/DC–like riff, the epic “New Way” and the Tyketto like “Tell Me” combining muscle and melody in one fine package. Possibly the pick of the new material is “The Great Unknown” which has been written for the forthcoming Hollywood movie, The Jump Off. You can almost picture the explosive video for this track, such is the dynamics and passion within the song.

In fact, the main strength of Logan lies in their ability to pen some real hard edged Grunge-like riffs with memorable melodies. Often bands overdo the riffs at the expense of a decent tune or overdose on melody leaving the riffs somewhat limp-wristed, not so with Logan, who get the combination spot on.

logan Talk about saving the best until last. In “Hallowed Ground” and “When I Get Down”, Logan have two bona fide classics in their bag. The former containing a huge brooding riff that would have done Alice in Chains or Soundgarden proud in their heyday and the latter a slow burner of a ballad that builds up into an impressive crescendo and would undoubtedly provide them with a hit single given some decent exposure. What a fine way to end the show on an absolute high.

Logan certainly kept to their pre-show promise and delivered a stadium sized show on a small club stage. The crowd of around 100 or so witnessed a band who are the ascendancy and it will only be a matter of time until Logan return to play much, much bigger venues. For those in tonight’s audience, they will be able to brag “I was there just before Logan hit the big time”. One thing is for sure, Logan’s time is just round the corner.


  • Mick Burgess

    Mick is a reviewer and photographer here at Metal Express Radio, based in the North-East of England. He first fell in love with music after hearing Jeff Wayne's spectacular The War of the Worlds in the cold winter of 1978. Then in the summer of '79 he discovered a copy of Kiss Alive II amongst his sister’s record collection, which literally blew him away! He then quickly found Van Halen I and Rainbow's Down To Earth, and he was well on the way to being rescued from Top 40 radio hell!   Over the ensuing years, he's enjoyed the Classic Rock music of Rush, Blue Oyster Cult, and Deep Purple; the AOR of Journey and Foreigner; the Pomp of Styx and Kansas; the Progressive Metal of Dream Theater, Queensrÿche, and Symphony X; the Goth Metal of Nightwish, Within Temptation, and Epica, and a whole host of other great bands that are too numerous to mention. When he's not listening to music, he watches Sunderland lose more football (soccer) matches than they win, and occasionally, if he has to, he goes to work as a property lawyer.

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