Words by Martin Halo | Photos by George Kopp

Cheap Trick raised the decibel level at the Wellmont Theater to a room of fist-pumping, howlin fans of screaming guitar rock. In the middle of a looping tour of the States and Canada, the band that was once dubbed “The American Beatles” by the Japanese Press, battled the unrelenting weather to drop their biggest hits on Montclair.

With a black and white checkered stage setup, including the stack of amps, vocalist Robin Zander and guitarist Rick Nielsen outlined a musical career that spanned four decades. Their last LP was released in 2009, but a nostalgic set was warmly welcomed with a cover of “Ain’t That A Shame,” and hits “The Flame,” “I Want You to Want Me” and “Dream Police.”

Neilsen stole the show with a collection of guitars, culminating with an over the top six neck guitar to finish the set. After a short break the encore delivered “Surrender.”

Upcoming shows at the Wellmont Theater are Bob Weir & Ratdog, Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience, Lewis Black and the Psychedelic Furs. Tickets are on-sale now.



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