Meldrum All-Star Benefit Show with Lizzy Borden
Tuesday, May 26th – The Whisky
By Alison “MetalBabe” Cohen
I attended the Benefit for Michelle Meldrum (Wargod/Phantom Blue/Meldrum) at the Whisky on Tuesday, May 26th. This event was put on by Michelle Meldrum’s family to honor Michelle and the one year anniversary of her passing. Michelle Meldrum passed away May 21, 2008 as a result of a cystic growth on her brain that had restricted oxygen and blood flow to her brain rendering her brain dead.
The Iron Maidens, Phantom Blue, Lizzy Borden and Meldrum were scheduled to play, in addition to several special guests. Host Leah Cevoli (Robot Chicken/Deadwood) did an amazing job and kept the crowd excited throughout the night.
I couldn’t wait to see Lizzy Borden, and was curious about seeing the Iron Maidens. (I hate to admit that I hadn’t actually ever seen them before.) With everything planned for the evening, the sets were pretty short, but there was lots of love in the air for Michelle Meldrum. The Iron Maidens opened with “Transylvania” and went into “Losfer Words,” “The Ides of March,” and “Wrathchild.” It was a really nice surprise when Jason McMaster from Dangerous Toys joined them on stage to close out their set with “Remember Tomorrow” and “Genghis Khan.”
I was lucky enough to run into Jason outside and spoke with him for a bit. He was really happy to have played with a bunch of “hot chicks” and let me know what a rare opportunity it was to have seen him play with someone other than Dangerous Toys. He also told me of his friendship with Michelle and how happy he was to be part of this event.
Next was the Phantom Blue reunion with Linda McDonald, Gigi Hangach and Kim Nielsen-Parsons. Tina Wood filled Meldrum’s position, and Sara Marsh and Courtney Cox (Iron Maidens) filled in for Nicole Couch. I had a Phantom Blue tape “back in the day” and it was nice to see them reunite for this special event.
Finally, it was what I had been waiting for… shock rockers LIZZY BORDEN! When Lizzy Borden entered the stage to rock “Live Forever,” I was surprised they weren’t wearing their “traditional” costumes and makeup. This was my 4th Lizzy Borden experience, and the 1st time I had seen them out of costume. Also, it was their 1st U.S. show with 19 year old Dario Lorina joining shredder Chris Sanders on guitar. (Ira Black announced his departure from Lizzy Borden in February.) Their set included “Never Too Young,” Rainbow’s “Long Live Rock n’ Roll,” “Me Against the World,” and “Tomorrow Never Comes.” Althoughshort, the set was amazing. I only wish I could go to Rocklahoma and see them again!
From there, I spent most of the night catching up with the Lizzy Borden boys and met new guitar player Dario Lorina, who was thrilled to be part of Lizzy Borden. I was really surpised how heavy Meldrum (w/Gene Hoglan) was. Some of it seemed pretty crazy. I’ve listened to them a little more since the event and I learned that they have toured with Motörhead, Zakk Wylde’s Black Label Society, Sepultura, Danzig, and Nashville Pussy. Definitely check them out if you have a chance.
The All-Star Jam was starting as I left. Unfortunately Lemmy couldn’t make it, but I noticed Chuck Wright (Quiet Riot) and Phil Varone (Skid Row/Saigon Kick) on stage. I had a blast, and am glad I was able to be part of this benefit.