Aerosmith are one of those rock bands who, even if you don’t listen to their music a lot at home, you still want to hear and see live, simply because they are legends. And because Steven Tyler is such a rockstar that he himself created the very rock clichés he represents.
After a wet afternoon listening to other average rock bands at the first day of Calling Festival in Clapham on Saturday 28, fans were compensated with an extraordinary show by the American band who opened with Mama Kin, Tyler holding his mic-stand over his shoulder, sounding as good as on CD, or even better. The energy coming from the stage was almost unbearable, especially considering the famous frontman’s charisma. From Love in an Elevator to Cryin’ or Rag Doll, the show went on into a crescendo of lean, uncomplicated, enjoyable rock tunes that proved how far Tyler’s vocal abilities can go. He’s one of those rare – especially in rock music – examples of someone whose voice actually sounds better now than when he started. This was even more blatant when the band was joined on stage by Richie Sambora for a duet on Livin’ On The Edge and the only voice you could hear was Tyler’s. Hadn’t it been for the big screens, it would have been hard for the audience to realise there was someone else singing on the song.
Predictably, the most awaited moment of the whole concert finally came with I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing. On London Pride Day it was just the right occasion to celebrate the beauty of such a great love classic with a touching kiss by a lesbian couple in the front row shown on the big screens, the crowd applauding and simply admiring the beauty of such a strong love statement.
After a short break, Tyler & Co. came back on stage, where a white piano had been placed. The audience knew it could mean only one thing: it was finally time for what might be Aerosmith’s best tune ever: Dream On. Tyler playing the white piano and singing, Perry playing the guitar standing up on the piano and thousands of people chanting in the park would be enough for anyone who likes good music and appreciates live performances to cherish a rare moment that lasts forever in one’s mind.
Complete set list:
Eat the Rich
Love in an Elevator
Livin’ on the Edge (with Richie Sambora)
Same Old Song and Dance
Rats in the Cellar
I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing
No More No More
Come Together (The Beatles cover)
Dude (Looks Like a Lady)
Walk This Way