Concert Preview: Bowes & Morley

Newly revitalized hard rock venue Club Citta will, appropriately, host newly revitalized British hard rock unit Bowes & Morley. The singer and guitarist behind '90s act Thunder, Danny Bowes and Luke Morley recently reformed as a duo and have just released a new album.

Originally forming Terraplane in the early '80s towards the end of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM), Bowes and Morley renewed their partnership as Thunder in 1989 with a new set of sidemen.

Building on the catchy but still heavy licks of bands like Bad Company, Thunder were an immediate success in the UK, with their debut album Backstreet Symphony reaching gold on the strength of the single "Dirty Love." Although their sound never caught on in the States amid the deluge of grunge, Thunder retained a committed following in the UK and Japan as well.

But by the late '90s, Bowes and Morley had decided it was time to retire the Thunder name. After a few years' break to start families, however, they elected to reform as Bowes & Morley. The result was the recent release of the well-received Moving Swiftly Along.

"I would have found it hard to write another Thunder album," songwriter Morley related on the band's website. "I wouldn't call it a change in direction as much as an evolution. We will always be the people and musicians we've always been, but nobody wants to stand still."

The band also responded forcefully to a question about aging rock stars: "I didn't choose this job, it chose me and that's why Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Jimmy Page, Pete Townsend et al still do it. Nobody has the right to tell another human being that they're too old to pick up a guitar or pull on a pair of leather trousers. If anybody finds aging rock stars embarrassing I would suggest to them that they look away."

For those who won't be looking away, expect Bowes & Morley to focus on material from their new album at Club Citta, but also look to them to spice up the show with some Thunder tunes. "I think people who've been to see us over the years are smart enough not to expect a Thunder show," Bowes said, adding the caveat, "If we do decide that a piece of material from the past fits appropriately with what we're doing now, then we'll do it."

Bowes & Morley play Club Citta on July 6. See listings for details.

credit: Club Citta

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