Dead End Drive-In: Now Showing -The Chuck Norris Experiment - ‘Live At Rockpalast: The Bootleg Series Vol 1’ Print E-mail
Written by Johnny H   
Sunday, 19 June 2016 03:00



The Chuck Norris Experiment - ‘Live At Rockpalast: The Bootleg Series Vol 1’ (Dope Productions)


Rewind to around about 15 years ago and there was only one place any discerning rock fan with access to Sky TV would be after the witching hour on a Saturday night, and that was watching Rockpalast on WDR. Back then I’d lost count of the amount of amazing gigs I got to see, including some still much treasured performances by the likes of Gluecifer, Backyard Babies and The Hellacopters to name but a few. It was the advent of Sky Digital that basically put paid to WDR being available in the UK and hence this past decade or so I’m been pretty much Rockpalast denied, until now that is, with the release of ‘Live At Rockpalast: The Bootleg Series Vol 1’ featuring those lovable Swedish glunk rocking rogues The Chuck Norris Experiment.


This release (the clue is in the title) is only available from the band themselves though via the link I have tagged at the bottom of this review, for the princely sum of 13 Euros. But if you do want to add one to your CNE collection then you need to be quick as I’m reliably informed they have but a handful left.


So what do you get for your money?


CNE DVD frnt


Well, as this is effectively a band approved bootleg the first thing you need to be assured of is that that both the 16:9 picture and stereo sound quality on this bare bones PAL disc is enough to singe the hair in your ears and scorch your retinas and is 100% better than the other versions you can find out there on the interweb. The multi camera angles are what you would expect from a professional retail DVD and extras aside pretty much the only thing that is missing from what it’s actually like seeing this formidable band live is any spontaneous nudity from bassist Chuck Dakota. Something I was kind of half expecting though especially during the elongated version of ‘RadioShadow’ which concludes the band’s 74 minute set with only said insane individual and drummer Chuck Buzz left on stage to play things out.


But I’m getting ahead of myself here, because this March 2013 performance from the Rockpalast Crossroads Festival in Bonn is a 22 track work of celluloid art boasting of some of the finest high octane rock ‘n’ roll you’ll find ANYWHERE in the world today. From the set opener and immediate call to arms that is ‘Bullshit City’ through to the likes of the incendiary ‘White Devil’ and anthemic ‘Taking Out Berlin’ The Chuck Norris Experiment deliver a musical lightning bolt straight to the heart, and thankfully due to this DVD we can now all experience it.


Of course this being The Chuck Norris Experiment there are a few curveballs, namely covers of Misfits’ ‘Where Eagles Dare’ and Springsteen’s ‘Hungry Heart’, which to me seem kind of odd when you would have thought they would air their own tunes simply to get some publishing money in, plus there’s the fact they only play two tracks from their then last 2010 released album ‘Dead Central’, namely All We Had In Common Was Our Name’ and ‘Back In Your Cage’. Something does make me think that perhaps the band weren’t too pleased with how that album turned out, but for me it is still one of my favourites by the band, and to once again not see ‘Psycho Man’ live is a tad disappointing especially after what I’ve just said about the covers. Thankfully an early preview of the - at the time - just recorded ‘Eaten Alive’ more than makes up for this though.




The inclusion of Turbonegro’s ‘I Got Erection’ is of course as essential as a sweat drenched run though one of the band’s very best songs ‘The Roof Is About To Cave In’ where guitarists Chuck The Ripper and Chuck Rooster trade solos like Murray and Smith headlining Monsters Of Rock in the late eighties. Okay maybe it’s a bit more like HeWhoCannotBeNamed and Fresh Prince Of Darkness, but you get my drift right????


With The Chuck Norris Experiment returning to the UK in a few weeks’ time to play a trio of live sets at Slugfest 9 ‘Live At Rockpalast: The Bootleg Series Vol 1’ is the perfect sensory appetiser for the chaos that will no doubt ensue. Pick yourself up a copy, crack open a few tins of Tuborg and party like its 2013 all over again, all thanks to this most wonderful glunk rock video time capsule.