08.12.2023 Konzertfabrik Z7 Pratteln, Switzerland
The year is drawing to a close, but the Z7 in Pratteln still has some great concerts to offer at the end of the year. Including this evening: Extreme, whose song “More Than Words” ran non-stop on all channels in the 90s, probably their biggest success and a classic. The band is still appreciated today, also for their other, much harder rocking songs.
However, the evening will be opened by The Last Internationale from New York. The band, fronted by vocalist Delila Paz and guitarist Edgey Pires, gives 100% right from the start. Delila whirls across the stage in a glitter jumpsuit; her movements and vocals occasionally remind me of a mixture between Joan Jett and Janis Joplin. Her voice is not only convincing in the rock genre, but also works with ballads. Despite her great physical effort, the lady doesn’t even seem to break a sweat. The band is known for its socially critical lyrics and on this evening the sign PAZ on her arm is probably drawing attention to the war between Palestine and Israel. Whether this is good or bad is up to you individually to decide; I think political issues should be allowed to be forgotten at an event.
Nevertheless, I am totally impressed by the performance of this four-piece band from the USA. Great songs and a live performance that some people could take a leaf out of their book. If you don’t know the band yet, you should listen to their songs and see them live.
After a slightly longer changeover phase, the lights go out and the spotlights come on for Extreme. In 1985, Extreme were founded by guitarist and pretty boy Nuno Bettencourt and singer Gary Cherone and became the pioneers of unplugged bands in the 90s. They reached number 1 in the US charts with “More Than Words”, a song that was featured on their second album. To this day, many people only know this one song by Extreme, because it is still quite often played on radio. But “Hole Hearted” and “Get the Funk Out” were big hits for the band, too. Their other albums flopped and could not follow the success of the second album.
This year they have released their 6th album, aptly titled “Six”. It seems that some of the new songs capture the audience’s attention again – which a sold-out show seems to be proving. Nuno and Gary are practically putting on a two-man show here, while the other two band members keep more in the background. There’s always something going on on stage and listening to Nuno’s guitar playing is a real treat. The band seems to enjoy their concert to the fullest and so does the audience. It’s nice to see that a band can be around for a long time and then suddenly enjoy greater success again after years of drought. A great concert by Extreme!