By Kevin C. Johnson
POST-DISPATCH POP MUSIC CRITIC
Say what you will about Kid Rock and his still-viable shtick and silly levels of self-confidence. You have to give him credit when it's due.
The proud Detroit rocker's well-executed Rock and Roll Revival tour, which came to the Scottrade Center Saturday night, was a high-rollin,' lowdown throwdown of rock, rap, country, honky-tonk and more.
Rock's high concept veered from the traditional concert setup. He fashioned his show as an old-style revue, with acts that might have otherwise filled a couple of opening slots instead coming on and off during his own set.
In this case, those acts were of legendary status Rev. Run, one half of Run-DMC and star of TV's "Run's House," and Dickey Betts, longtime guitarist with the Allman Brothers Band.
Able frontman Rock and his Twisted Brown Trucker Band, accompanied by a DJ and two female backup singers, got the party started with "Rock N Roll Jesus," the title track to his new CD. Rock seemed to think he lived up to the title and didn't mind courting just a teensy bit of controversy, extending his arms out as if he were nailed to a cross.
During his lengthy set, the solid Rock mixed interesting cover choices such as "This Little Light of Mine" with his own classics such as "Welcome 2 the Party," "Cowboy," "Picture" and "Bawitdaba." New material such as the exuberant "Amen" held up just as well.
Another new song, "Half Your Age" (take that, Pam Anderson), included a great comedic guest vocal by Rock's drummer, Stefanie Eulinberg.
But the real mixing came with the special guests. Betts' spot was highlighted by his and Rock's jamming it up on "Ramblin' Man" and more.
Then came Rev. Run's set, an old school hip-hop party with Rock and Run teaming up for rap classics such as "Rock Box," "King of Rock," "It's Like That," "It's Tricky" and obviously "Walk This Way."
Rock followed the hip-hop segment with an attempt at turntable scratching, but the equipment failed him, forcing him to abandon the segment. He sat in on drums for a minute instead. Such an unscripted concert moment felt positively retro.
Rock has said he can envision his Rock and Roll Revival show becoming a regular thing with different acts figuring into the mix. We say keep them coming.
Prior to the show, the crowd was warmed up all-American style with an introduction of several U.S. servicemen, a crowd rendition of the national anthem and a piped-in "Born in the USA" through the speakers.
email@example.com | 314-340-8191