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Billy Idol:The House of Blues, Anaheim

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Billy Idol
The House of Blues, Anaheim, CA—08/29/01

Summertime fun in Anaheim means catching Billy Idol at the House of Blues. A sweaty forum for his antics, he proved he's still got it: all the women swoon and guys can sing along and feel cool. As he himself points out, he's "Billy Fucking Idol"!

In the flesh Idol exudes energy and puts on a great show. Looking less like a punk rocker (even with the leather, even with the grimace, despite a little paunch) and more like someone who could have had a lead role in Sugartown, Idol works the crowd like a favorite stripper.

From the high energy "Dancing with Myself" to proving that Mr. Fist hasn't lost it on "Rebel Yell", he had us screaming for MORE MORE MORE.

There were moments in this night of refueled passions. An acoustic "White Wedding" proved poignant. His version of "(Don't You) Forget About me" from Simple Minds was excellent. And "Eyes without a Face". And "Flesh For Fantasy (FLESH! FLESH! FLESH!)". And "Sweet Sixteen". Hey, at least he's not covering Nirvana— he knows his territory. "Mony Mony" and the audience cries of "Come on everybody, get laid, get fucked" was not a Grammy moment but he scored points for playing along.

Mr. Billy Fucking Idol hasn't lost his touch but good lord he owes a lot to the band. Mr. Steve Stevens in particular keeps Idol out of the county fairs. His guitar on "To Be A Lover" turned the song into a cool rockabilly tune. He also brought out his inner Spaniard for a several minutes of flamenco guitar right before "Don't need a gun". Stevens is a rock god, from the big hair down to the cigarette past the spandex and closing in on his fingers and Idol is fortunate to have him. Oddly, he could show off as much as he wanted and still seem humble compared to Idol.

Idol did bring out a new song entitled "Walk the Monster" but that's all you need to know. He knows and we know why we were there. After all, he's Billy Fucking Idol.

  Anji Milanovic

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Billy Idol:The House of Blues, Anaheim

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