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Concert Reviews:
Lenny Kravitz Stages Successful "Revolution" At The Fillmore
 

By GARY GRAFF
Of the Oakland Press

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DETROIT -- If any contemporary rocker is suited to play a place called the Fillmore, it's Lenny Kravitz.

At this point a veteran with 18 years and nine studio albums behind him, Kravitz trades on a mix of vintage styles steeped in Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Sly & the Family Stone and Curtis Mayfield -- all of whom staked at least some of their legends at Bill Graham's famous Fillmores in San Francisco and New York. So when Kravitz brought his new Love Revolution to the Fillmore Detroit on Sunday (Jan. 27), the 90-minute, 15-song show felt perfectly at home amidst the chandeliers and other opulent theatrical trappings.

Call him timeless if you like him, retro if you don't, but it's hard to deny that Kravitz and his hot six-piece band -- including two horn players -- put on a powerhouse concert that often leaves his one-man-band albums in a dusty wake. Sunday's outing started with a taste of the new, a pair of tracks from Kravitz's forthcoming "It is Time For a Love Revolution" album, which comes out Feb. 5; both the title track and the chunky blues-rock workout "Bring It On" received lusty, extended treatments, with solos by Kravitz and fellow guitarist Craig Ross and by saxophonist Harold Todd.

Kravitz sat at the piano for the "...Love Revolution" single "I'll Be Waiting," but the rest of the night was dedicated to a procession of his hits. He laid back for the sweetly melodic "Again" but spent most of the show cranking through rock anthems such as "Always on the Run," "Dig In," "Where are We Runnin'?," "Fly Away," "Are You Gonna Go My Way" and his cover of the Guess Who's "American Woman." "Mr. Cab Driver" and "Lady" dug a little deeper into his catalog, while "Let Love Rule" was its usual epic, with a lengthy audience singalong and a pair of trips into the crowd for Kravitz to "feel" the love up close and personal.

Kravitz's message is not a complicated one -- "Love is all that matters," as he sang in "Always on the Run." On Sunday the love went both ways between artist and fans -- a successful revolution by any measure.



Send your thoughts and comments to Gary Graff

 



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