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Leon Knight, King Of Rock & Roll At Harvard & Stone, Tuesday July 27 2021

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

 

If music is entertainment and if a live performance is always an act, last night’s show at Harvard & Stone would have been the most convincing demonstration. This was the last residency show of Leon Knight, the self-proclaimed King of Rock & Roll, and for the occasion, he had gathered a first-class glam rock lineup, something I hadn’t seen for a long time. The long and very entertaining night – it was close to 2 am when I left the club – was as much music as comedy, with outrageous performances and very colorful characters.

Tocutthroughthestatic started the night with a set of good vibes and a feel-good dancefloor of pop/soul/funk/rap. It was simply a DJ and a guy with a mic, dancing, singing, and having a good time. He was wearing an ample robe and a curious hat masking his face and making him a bit mysterious, but he partially removed it mid-set. The music had alternatively the energy of hip hop, the sweetness of pop, the aggressiveness of rap, the coolness of soulful R&B, but he always had the right dance moves; apparently, it was all new material.

But the night was filled with surprises and Babelord didn’t disappoint. This woman was sending strong Ziggy Stardust vibes and the music, a mix of sweet dancefloors and ethereal electro synth-pop was fitting her intergalactic-princess look. With her tight flashy yellow jumpsuit, white latex boots, and hair to match, she was dancing with ample and gracious gestures, looking at us through her lightning bolt red glasses. Meanwhile, the two silver musicians behind drums, guitar, and keyboards were backing up her powerful vocals and mimicking every one of her moves. She could have just fallen on earth – the story says that ‘in Galactic year 420.69, a young Galactan by the name of Babelord was sent to the planet Earth with an impossible mission’ – but the music didn’t fill alien for a minute. The mood was upbeat, magical, and simply eye-catching with an eventual ‘80s meets EDM feel. Babelord was a dreamy and sexy vision, making everyone dance, but it was not without emotional or positive-energy moments, like during their song ‘Love Without Wanting,’ a powerful pop song showcasing Babelord’s voice with some Cindy Lauper meets Lady Gaga pipes.

If you think intergalactic music was too dramatic, Bonavega brought the show to another level of theatricality. He was the outrageous Rockstar, losing a piece of clothing every minute to finally perform in leopard thongs and fishnet stockings. He was one pelvis thrust after another flashy pause, and his colorful performance was everything from Euro-trash to Freddie Mercury to theatrical-burlesque pop to over-the-top and honestly obnoxious glam rock. In other words, he was fantastic. The music was as flashy and dramatic as his act, his aerobic approach was boisterous and stormy, while he was occasionally playing a showy electric guitar, backed up by some muscular drumming. Of course, there were long tacky guitar solos, some hard-hitting songs (‘Hot Over You’), and some truly catchy ones (‘Nurture Boy’). Bonavega was also the most remarkable performance of America’s Got Talent, last year and he made quite an impression on the jury, how couldn’t he have?

But the king of the night was Leon Knight, basically, someone who is coming from nowhere but is already reclaiming the highest title possible: the King of Rock & Roll? Introduced by a comedy act, Leon took the stage by storm at the sounds of trumpets totally appropriate for his crowning. ‘I am here to claim my throne as the king of fucking rock and roll,’ he yelled, and soon, it was only screams, loud guitars, and a thunder of a show with some good old bluesy rock & roll riffs shaking up the walls of the small venue. Backed up by 5 musicians, he jumped a few times, climbed to the upper level, slid down on stage using the pole, and barely caught his breath. This guy had the rage and some authentic rock & roll fire, so naturally, the crowd became a fury, the amps fell over, feet got crushed (mine included) and the steamy place got steamier. There were Hendrix-inspired guitar solos, a part played with the guitar behind the head, and a high-energy show from start to finish. The theatricality of the night culminated with another crowning, and wrapped with his royal furry mantle, Leon Knight truly looked like the King of Rock and Roll, a title that, as cliché as it looks, has never been reclaimed since that famous white guy from Memphis. It was about time!

 

 

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A post shared by Alyson Camus (@alysoncamus)

 

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A post shared by Alyson Camus (@alysoncamus)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Alyson Camus (@alysoncamus)

 

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A post shared by Alyson Camus (@alysoncamus)

Tocutthroughthestatic

Babelord

Leon Knight

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Leon Knight

Babelord

Leon Knight

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Babelord

Leon Knight

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Leon Knight

Babelord

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Leon Knight

Babelord

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Leon Knight

Babelord

Leon Knight

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Babelord

Leon Knight

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Babelord

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Babelord

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Babelord

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Leon Knight

Babelord

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

Tocutthroughthestatic

Babelord

Bonavega

Leon Knight

Leon Knight

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