BABYLON SHAKES PUT ON IMPRESSIVE DEBUT PERFORMANCE
Date: December 10, 2017
Venue: Cancun Cantina
Location: Hanover, Maryland, USA
Event: Brad Lee Entertainment’s Holiday 6pk
Reviewer: Bill Massey of Ignite The Scene Facebook Group
Photographer: Christopher Carroll ROCK Photography
It was approximately four months ago that I attended a Brad Lee Entertainment event at Cancun Cantina where, headliner, Faster Pussycat, put on a spectacular show. There were a few other bands that night but one, in particular, stood out. It was North Carolina’s Last Call Messiahs.
As I watched lead singer/guitarist Chris Clark perform, I was instantly impressed! He had a calm confidence onstage and came well-armed with some good songs! Sadly, I learned that this was to be their final show. Almost as soon as Last Call Messiahs disbanded, rumors of a new project that Chris was putting together called Babylon Shakes emerged. Since then, over the last couple of months, there has been quite a buzz with regard to the new group and I’ve heard several teasers and demos from this self-described “classic Aerosmith meets Hanoi Rocks” band (infected with the touch of ’80s sleaze for which Chris is so well known).
Fast forward to December 10th of this year, at yet another Brad Lee Entertainment event held at Cancun Cantina! I’m always up for a Brad Lee Entertainment event, but the fact that this one would mark the debut of Babylon Shakes made it even more special. There was an exciting energy as well as on edge emotion floating through the room in anticipation of this band’s very first show. A friend that night told me that he was all set to give them a pass, no matter what, for the simple fact that they had only been in existence for three months. It turned out, no pass was needed.
From the second these guys hit the stage, we knew we were in for something special! The sound was precisely as advertised. They did not disappoint. Bassist Gary Jordan took the stage like a monster! He hit his rock poses with a wide, confident stance, claiming the stage. Drummer Jeff Mortimer played with an excitement that could be felt from the back of the room. He couldn’t sit still, constantly standing, tossing sticks, dancing in his seat. It was clear to see that this band was not simply going through the motions. They were selling these songs as well as the attitude that came with them.
Chris Clark wrapped his sleazy vocal style in and out of his raw, sensual guitar lines. Babylon Shakes definitely had the look and sound of a well-seasoned band. Their years of experience, with their former respective bands, were paying off in droves. Simply put, I was blown away! The music really did taste of the late ’70s with a sprinkle of ’80s spice. As for the look, let’s just say that if Michael Monroe and Buster Poindexter (New York Dolls era) had a gaggle of love children, they would look a lot like this!
The saying goes “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”, and these guys took this to heart. With catchy songs like “Velveteen Libertine” and “Silver Tongue Devil”, they had the crowd pumped up and screaming for more! I’ve seen a lot of debuts over the years but I don’t think any have made the impression on me that this one did. The good news is, they’ll only get better!
Babylon Shakes have already finished recording and mixing their upcoming debut release so watch for it! And, if you get the chance, you definitely don’t want to miss them live! They are slated to play D*Toxin Production’s 2018 M-Pre Party show on May 3rd at Sonoma’s Bar & Grill in Columbia, Maryland.
Get all the Babylon Shakes info you need, as well as loads of merchandise on their Facebook page.
Babylon Shakes performing “Silver Tongue Devil” and “Sunset Striptease” at Cancun Cantina in Hanover, Maryland, USA on December 10, 2017: