El Vez Ready To Take Over World

El Vez? Or just an impersonator?

When a friend tells me that a certain album is "the best

record of all time" or that a live performance was the "greatest show I've ever

seen" I tend to distrust such hyperbole and, with my expectations raised, I'm

almost always disappointed when I experience the real thing. Many people have

told me incredible things about El Vez (the Mexican Elvis) concerts and because

I've enjoyed his records in the past I was afraid I was in for another letdown

when he played last Thurs. (Oct. 3) at the Iron Horse in Northampton, MA. Boy

was I wrong. It was everything I could ever dream of (and more) all rolled into

the most entertaining hour and a half of my concert-going life thus far. Forget

Prince's Lovesexy tour. Forget Gwar and Man or Astro-Man?. While they all put

on great stage shows none of them (save perhaps Prince) have the stage presence

and charisma to pull off a show the way El Vez did.

After the crowd was

bathed in flashing lights and sirens reminiscent of a Public Enemy concert

circa 1987, the self-proclaimed bastard son of Elvis and Charo marched on stage

with his band The Spiders from Memphis and his two lovely female

singers/dancers, The El Vettes (named Pricillita and Lisa Maria). El Vez's

entire posse was dressed in military uniforms unlike anything the world has

seen. The El Vettes wore sun-glasses, skin tight camouflaged t-shirts and

mini-skirts, and held toy sub-machine guns. El Vez, clad in a ruffled

camouflaged long-sleeve shirt, matching bell-bottom pants and platform army

boots, jumped right into "Say It Loud, I'm Brown and I'm Proud" from his brand

new album G.I. Ay, Ay! Blues. Throughout the night there were six (count

em, SIX) costume changes, strobe lights, smoke machines... the

works...

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