Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Review: Great White and Slaughter at the Golden Nugget

Temperatures have been scorching outside and hovering at or above 100 degrees for many days across the region, but the Golden Nugget Event Center was red hot as well this past Saturday.

Two well-known bands with ties to the 1980s music era turned up the heat on Saturday night (Aug. 5, 2023) at the Golden Nugget Casino in Lake Charles, La., as Great White and Slaughter delighted the large crowd with an evening of fantastic music and a stroll down memory lane.

Slaughter, featuring vocalist Mark Slaughter, bassist, Dana Strum and guitarist Jeff "Blando" Bland, opened the night and powered through a six-song, 35-minute set of the band's best hits. Vocalist Mark Slaughter still sounds great and can hit all of the high notes that helped distinguish the band from many of its peers. The band itself was like a machine and firing on all cylinders as it churned through hit after hit, such as "Mad About You," "Burning Bridges" and "Spend My Life."

Next, the group pulled a rabbit out of its musical hat with a fiery cover of Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song" that had the fans on their feet. The band followed with its most well-known hit song, "Fly to the Angels," before closing with "Up All Night," which featured a touch of The Who's "Won't Get Fooled Again" at its conclusion.

Great White hit the stage a short time later and quickly let it be known that this quintet was here to rock as well. The band still features the core members from it's most popular albums of the mid-to-late 1980s, including guitarist, Mark Kendall; guitarist and keyboardist, Michael Lardie; and drummer, Audie Desbrow, along with bassist Scott Snyder, who has been in the band for several years.

The group hit the stage went into the energetic track "Desert Moon" from its 1991 release, "Hooked." The first thing fans surely noticed was the very youthful appearance of Great White's new vocalist, Brett Carlisle, who joined the group in late 2022. The second thing they noticed was the sound of his powerhouse vocals that fit perfectly with the band and its music. Jack Russell may have been the band's original singer, but the reportedly 25-year-old Carlisle will win over most fans with ease.

Carlisle and company wasted little time in idle chit-chat and, aptly, let the music do the talking instead. The group's performance continued with hits such as "Lady Red Light" and "House of Broken Love" before throwing it back to its 1984 debut with the track, "Stick It." The show continued with "Save Your Love," "Rock Me" and the closing tune, "One Bitten, Twice Shy."

It was a great night of music and showed that bands with connections to the hard rock sounds of 1980s and early 1990s are seeing a bit of a resurgence in popularity and show attendance. Hopefully both bands will be around several more years and return to the Southwest Louisiana and Southeast Texas region sooner rather than later.


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