John 5

The State Theatre | 4/9/17

By Jay Oakley

The State Theatre | 3/15/16

John 5 is a ridiculous talent and every band and artist that has had him was blessed and any band or artist that gets to work with him in the future should be super stoked. He has taken such pride in his craft. From his guitar tone to his technique to his persona and the way he owns the stage.

As John prepares for the release of his next album with Rob Zombie, The Electric Warlock Acid Witch Satanic Orgy Celebration Dispenser, he has embarked on a series of solo shows to fuel his creativity and show everyone his roots in music. The instrumental shows, know as John 5 and the Creatures, are with a full band. A three-piece made up of a bass player and drummer. John still continues to put out his own music as well. Even though it has been a couple years now since John's last album, 2014's Careful with that Axe, he has continued to release music. The first day of every month this year he has released a new song and music video.

The show was designed in a very intimate way. No openers, early start and early finish. Despite the one hour set time it was loaded with a ton of energy and guitar virtuosity. Starting off with an eerie intro, performed through a liquid-filled Fender Telecaster, that set the tone and transitioning into the shredding "First Victim." Continuing with other stellar song like "This Is My Rifle" and "Sin" led up to the blue-grass based " "Jiffy Jam." For me the standout performance was "Mad Monster Party" but his cover of Michael Jackson's "Beat It" was the song that truly brought the house down. Closing out the set was a sick medley of well-known, riff-heavy tunes that had the audience with their jaws on the floor. Playing riffs from Judas Priest to Iron Maiden to White Zombie and Marilyn Manson and many, many more. It's important to point out that as mind-blowing as it was to watch John perform all the riffs in the medley it was equally as stunning to watch his band not miss a beat as they went from song to song flawlessly.

He is a show all of his own and a show not to be missed. Catch him, starting in April, on tour with Rob Zombie and watch for his next series of solo shows.