Power of Metal.dk Live Review

Location: The Black Heart, London, England
14 September, 2014

 Mike Tramp, Dave Winkler

Mike Tramp is best known as the singer of White Lion, a band that is still fondly remembered by droves of loyal fans, myself included. Since White Lion ceased to be, Mike kept building a solid repertoire of his own songs, the most recent contained within the album “Museum”.

Keen to strut his stuff the old-fashioned way, Mike grabbed a guitar and embarked on a trek of European clubs starting in England and scheduled to end in Denmark, his country of origin. The last of his England dates was in London, so armed with my camera and a cheerful sense of anticipation, I conveyed to the heart of London’s live scene.

Dave Winkler  (www.facebook.com/dave.winkler.9210)

Dave Winkler was the only support act. Normally he plays guitar with Parkway, a Melodic Rock/Power-Pop band from London. Tonight, however Dave performed solo for the very first time - so his jitteriness was perhaps understandable. The set featured acoustic versions of Parkway songs, some of his own compositions and other songs with a special meaning for him. His tribute to the recently deceased Jimi Jamison (Survivor) was a good indication of his musical interests.

Despite having a good ear for melody, Dave’s show was nothing to write home about. It was mildly entertaining though his effort to engage with the audience was commendable. Each song was preceded with an explanation of its significance for him, generally involving a humorous tone. Some self-deprecating jibes were occasionally used to give himself added confidence (“With my band this one usually get a great reaction so I hope I won’t fuck this up”).

Waiting For You
Last Mistake
Outta My Head
I’m Always Here (Jimi Jamison cover)
Before The Song Is Over
Time After Time (Cyndi Lauper cover)

RATING: 59/100

Mike Tramp (http://miketramp.dk)

Very casually, Mike Tramp strolled onto the stage to deliver his set:  a mix of acoustic versions of White Lion and of Freak Of Nature songs together with a selection of his own material. He peppered his show with lots of stories, anecdotes and friendly banter, sometimes meandering incomprehensibly but always being very entertaining. He even joked about his own jokes and throughout the gig took every opportunity to name-drop countless Metal bands, such as King Diamond, Dio, Ozzy and Skid Row.

From the opening ‘Little Fighter’ – one of the White Lion songs performed – it became clear that this was not really a gig in the traditional sense. With zero security staff, no fancy lights, no stage props, this was more like a gathering between longtime friends in someone’s back garden. This sense of intimacy gave rise to a magical aura within which laughter roared, tears fell and memories were rekindled.

For me the performance’s highlights were ‘When The Children Cry’ and ‘Hymn For Ronnie’, the latter being a song he wrote mere days after Ronnie James Dio’s passing. But also the numbers taken from his solo albums went down well, particularly ‘Cobblestone Street’ and ‘Mother’. 

The Danish lion still roars!

Little Fighter
Tell Me
Trust In Yourself
Turn the Other Way

Road to Valhalla
Endless Highway

And You Were Gone
Hymn for Ronnie
What Am I
Cobblestone Street
Better Off
Broken Heart
Radar Love (Golden Earring cover)
When The Children Cry
Farewell To You

RATING: 82/100

Attending: Chris Galea