Kerrang! - November 28th, 1987

(November 28, 1987)

Originally Published: November 28, 1987

Blood Orange

Author: Sabrina Frees-Perrin

Alice Cooper
Orange Show Pavillion, San Bernadino, California

Exactly one year after Alice Cooper made the comeback of the '80s on his 'Constrictor' tour, he returned to San Bernardino to give us a chance to raise our fists and yell before going on to once again conquer the rest of the world. With two strikes already against him - the first being that virtually no-one was aware of the new album, 'Raise Your Fist And Yell', and second being that he was playing to an audience whose local radio station considers Bruce Springsteen and Madonna to be hard rock - 'The Coop' definitely had his work cut out, and there was one other minor problem to be dealt with: Faster Pussycat. The opening act, were definitely no favourites with the locals, having been pelted with beer bottles and booed off stage during their last appearance in nearby Corona.

Between sets the roadies cleared the stage and the security guards and I removed the t-shirts, tennis shoes and underwear from the photo pit. Just as the last pair of Reeboks were auctioned off, the lights went out again, and the cheers went up. The acrid smell of smoke and the damp chill of dry ice filled the hall, and just as the synth reached an earshaking roar Alice burst onto the stage signalling another hour and 20 minutes of blood-soaked metal mayhem.

The opener, 'Teenage Frankenstein', including a pre-assembled version of last year's model ready for demolition. The riding crop was once again in hand for 'No More Mr Nice Guy', with Alice whipping the daylights out of everything in sight. We were treated to yet more dollar bills and plastic dollies during 'Billion Dollar Babies' and 'Mistress' basked in the limelight for 'Is It My Body?'

By the time Alice had delivered 'Eighteen' on crutches and Kane 'Rambo' Roberts had successfully stunned the crowd with his fire-breathing guitar, I was beginning to get an overwhelming sense of deja-vu; hadn't I seen all of this before?!

'Prince Of Darkness' was inserted just in time and gave Alice another creature to eliminate. Instead of the ever-predictable reaper in black, the Prince Of Darkness was portrayed by a mummified character, adding what I thought was a rather creative twist to the show. "Chop Chop Chop' led to the murder of the streetwalking 'Gail' and Alice serenaded her corpse with 'Roses On White Lace' followed by what else... 'Only Women Bleed'!

As Gail's cadaver was removed from the stage by Alice's ever ready bunch of creepy critters, we were treated to a snack of 'Devil's Food'. An old friend then joined the splatter king in the form of a black widow with glowing red eyes. Never one to share his stage for too long, Alice viciously dismembered his old buddy, tossing the robotic arachnid's legs all over the floor.

'Dead Babies' turned out to be his undoing, and after a few gory little surprises he was dragged, kicking and fighting, up the steps of the gallows. In fine Cooperesque tradition, the desperado was hung by the neck until dead, or, in this case, until the first notes of 'School's Out' rumbled through the speakers.

In white top hat and tails, Alice introduced the band, then after a few more choruses left the stage, returning to deliver 'Freedom' while his faithful assistants sent huge balloons out into the crowd. Warning: the balloons aren't all filled with confetti. Dress accordingly!