Anyone who knows me knows what a fan of not just hard rock and heavy metal music, but the live concert scene I am. That being said it’s unavoidable that I would catch a few bands for more than one performance as I hit up concerts in Toronto and festivals around the world as much as work allows throughout the year. Jake E. Lee‘s Red Dragon Cartel is a band that I’ve seen a whopping six times throughout 2014 and frankly, it’s still not enough! After all the hoopla surrounding the band’s premiere show front man Darren James Smith has more than proven his vocal prowess around the world, something that I, like Jake E. Lee, knew he would. A former member of Harem Scarem, Warmachine, Heavens Fire and other Toronto area bands, the Southern Ontario resident has delivered countless top notch performances as the band saw heavy worldwide touring throughout 2014.
Darren not only has to sing the songs from Red Dragon Cartel‘s self-titled album issued earlier this year that he provided vocals for, but has to also sing songs that originally showcased the voices of the likes of Robin Zander and Paul Di’Anno. On top of that he has to pull off the late Ray Gillen‘s Badlands tracks and one of the most well-known voices in rock, Ozzy Osbourne. Not an easy feat!
Jake E. Lee is a guitarist that everyone definitely has to see before they die and now with his Badlands brother Greg Chaisson stepping in for Ronnie Mancuso who returned to his producing, Red Dragon Cartel is still setting the world on fire! The band seemed to be playing everywhere in 2014 with appearances at Sweden Rock Festival, Monsters of Rock Cruise and M3 Festival and has more gigs planned for 2015. But on Wednesday December 10, 2014 they rolled into Toronto for the second time this year!
Once again, this is the sixth time that I’ve seen Red Dragon Cartel live this year and it’s still not enough! If you have the chance, don’t miss these guys!
PHOTO CREDIT: WALLYGATOR NORTON 2014