Tesla – ‘Alive In Europe’ (Frontiers Records) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Rob Watkins   
Thursday, 22 April 2010 06:00

Tesla_Alive"Signs...Signs...everywhere there's signs"


Throughout their illustrious career, the Sacramento five-piece Tesla have crossed the Atlantic to perform for European audiences on scattered occasions.


As a fan here in the UK some of the selected highlights for me have been Newport Centre 1987 supporting Def Leppard, where the band even had time for a dip in the pool and strode 'towelled up' through the crowd during Da Leps set. Minehead, Butlins, 2007 and their ungodly hour in the morning set at the inaugural Hard Rock Hell Festival, and then finally their show stealing performance at Download Festival 2009.


After 25 years, 12 albums and over 16 million sales worldwide, Tesla really have been going from strength to strength ever since the guys regrouped in 2000. And it's encouraging to see the band recognise Europe's importance in all of this, via this release on Frontiers Records


This live offering brings together 15 tracks from the band's last European tour and gives all you Über Röckin' amigo's some familiar and maybe some not so familiar tunes to get your toes a tapping.


The set begins with the opening duo from their 2008 release 'Forever More', via the album's title track and 'I Wanna Live', and whatever your opinion of the band, there's no doubting the originality and class of front man Jeff Keith.


Of the new tracks those that are performed (like 'So What!' and 'What A Shame') stand up well next to the older established classics. Talking of classics well there's 'Modern Day Cowboy and its opening riff that alone begs a mention for sure, 'Heaven's Trail', 'The Way It Is' and the beautifully crafted 'Love Song', are all faultlessly delivered to a sweaty audience lapping up every note like rock hungry warriors always do.


Timeless tunes like 'Hang Tough' take me back to yesteryears when my perm was still something I topped up monthly (at home of course). And whilst 'Signs' may be a cover of a Five Man Electrical Band song, Tesla seem to have claimed this with all their ten arms wrapped strongly around it. Likewise their version of Ph.D's 'Lil' Suzie' lifted from their 1986 debut release 'Mechanical Resonance'


And whilst we're mentioning that classic debut album personally I would have liked a few more numbers from it like 'EZ Come EZ Go' 'Changes' or 'Getting Better' as opposed to tracks like 'Shine Away' but there we go. This is a band with such a rich back catalogue trying please everyone is nigh on impossible, I guess.


You can't cram it all in now can ya...fine work fellas.