Alter Bridge thrilled at their sell-out debut Northern Irish show (following the previous night in Dublin) in Belfast on Wednesday night (21st June 2017), as Myles Kennedy, Mark Tremonti & co ripped through some of their greatest hits, while promising a return much sooner than expected. The band's appearance at the city's Ulster Hall came as Alter Bridge wrapped up a number of festival dates that included a slot at Download Festival in the UK.
Having never played on Irish shores much to the chagrin of one dedicated FaceBook group who had been campaigning to bring them to Ireland - north or south - for the last few years, the Florida quartet made up for lost time, with a set that covered all eras of the rising stars' catalogue. Not only that, but as singer Myles Kennedy gleefully announced midway through the set, the band are set to return before the year is out.
Kicking off oldie 'Come To Life', the first of a slew of anthems arrived in the form of 'Writing's On The Wall', signalling a night that would be dominated by tracks from 2007's popular 'Blackbird' release, and 2016's affirming 'The Last Hero'.
Combining their trademark ferocious D-tuned riffs with soaring melodies throughout, the roof-raising 'Ghost Of Days Gone By' gave way to the uplifting 'My Champion' as Kennedy and Tremonti led from the front, with bassist Brian Marshall and drummer Scott Phillips holding down the rhythm.
Greeting the crowd, a perma-grinning Kennedy said; "Well good evening, it's so good to see you. You having fun so far?"
Showing off his not inconsiderable guitar skills, as well as his improbably high-pitched vocals during 'Crows On A Wire', the singer then handed over front man duties to; " the man, the myth, the legend Mark Tremonti" for an emotive 'Waters Rising'.
With things nearing an end, Kennedy took the opportunity to drop the biggest surprise of the evening, by announcing the band's return to the Ulster Hall in just a few short months' time. Said the front man: "This has been wonderful. We finally made this after all these years. We're coming back really soon; I'm not joking, we're coming back on October 8th, right here!"
With a disbelieving crowd delighted, an utterly rousing 'Show Me A Leader' raised the roof, with the closing 'Rise Today' proving a fitting note, and the ultimate anthem on which to end the night.
Check out our gallery from the Belfast show below. All photos by Jimmy Little Jnr.
Alter Bridge return to Ireland for two shows in October, as part of their Autumn 2017 run. A full list of dates can be viewed below.
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Alter Bridge 2017 European Tour Dates:
2nd Oct - London, Royal Albert Hall – SOLD OUT
3rd Oct - London, Royal Albert Hall – SOLD OUT
5th Oct - Edinburgh / Usher Hall
7th Oct - Dublin , Olympia
8th Oct - Belfast, Ulster Hall