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Friday, September 3, 2010

What to Do Tonight: Rock of Ages Featuring Alice Cooper

Posted By on Fri, Sep 3, 2010 at 8:00 AM

Our nightmare is Alices opening band
  • Our nightmare is Alice's opening band

Alice Cooper, the godfather of all theatrical rockers, doesn’t get to headline arenas, sell truckloads of merchandise, or star in soda commercials like his bastard offspring Kiss. Instead, he’s headlining a show at the home of the Lake County’s minor-league baseball team. But Cooper’s greatest songs — “No More Mr. Nice Guy,” “I’m Eighteen,” and “School’s Out” are way more enduring than anything that Gene Simmons’ band has turned out. He’s also carved out a diverse and impressive empire as the host of a nationally syndicated nightly radio show, restaurant owner, and author of a book about golf, all while watching disciples like Marilyn Manson come and go. More importantly, after an extended mid-career dalliance with conformity (where he tried to keep up with pop-metal trends), Cooper strung together a triumphant, if someone unheralded, return to form over the past decade. He’s released a series of consistently strong, concept-driven albums, including his most recent, 2008’s Along Came a Spider. Of course in Alice’s wonderland, the music is just part of the show. He’s always taken extra care to deliver an over-the-top concert with narrative, snakes, and blood. His current trek is no exception: Cooper meets his demise onstage via guillotines, gallows, and other torture devices. Opening is a band made up of guys who were in Rare Earth, Sugarloaf, Blues Image, and Iron Butterfly, so you may not want to get there too early. Rock of Ages Featuring Alice Cooper starts at 7 p.m. at Classic Park, Eastlake. Tickets: $24.50-$44.50. —Matthew Wilkening

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