Image: Courtesy of Kings of Chaos Facebook Page

Image: Courtesy of Kings of Chaos Facebook Page

“We are here for one reason and one reason only – to rock!” That’s what Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top declared, and that’s exactly what they did! The Kings of Chaos concert took South Africa by storm for the second year, much to the screaming delight of hundreds of rock fanatics!

The event took place at Grand West Casino in Cape Town on 3 December 2014 and featured seven members of some of the world’s greatest rock groups that joined forces to make it a rock concert to remember.

The band was started in 2012 by Guns N’ Roses drummer Matt Sorum and was originally called Rock ‘n Roll All-Stars. The core members include Matt Sorum, Gilby Clarke and Duff McKagan (Gun N’ Roses), with an alternating line-up of members from bands such as Def Leppard, Deep Purple and Aerosmith.

This year’s line-up featured the core line-up of Matt Sorum, Gilby Clarke and Duff McKagan from Guns N’ Roses, plus Steven Tyler from Aerosmith, Billy Gibbons from ZZ Top, Robin Zander from Cheap Trick and Nuno Bettencourt from Extreme.

Lara Hinrichsen lives in Cape Town and works as an executive assistant. Lara, a self-confessed die-hard fan of rock, could not believe her luck when by chance she landed an invitation to the pre-concert press conference as well as free tickets to the event itself.

“Standing there at the press conference waiting for the band members to arrive was surreal. I could barely hold my camera still as I was shaking so much!” said Lara. “When the band members walked in they were all incredibly friendly and when Steve Tyler walked in I was snapping away on my camera and in my state of excitement I didn’t realise he was watching me as I madly snapped away at him, hoping to get the perfect shot. Next thing I knew his nose was right up against my camera and the room erupted in laughter. Of all the people he could have come right up to, he came up to me. I have no idea why but I like to think it was intention!”

Band members were relaxed and humourous during the press conference, but no one expected that Steven Tyler and Nuno Bettencourt from Extreme would treat the audience to an impromptu performance of More than Words. Lara described the moment as “electric”. Take a listen!

In an interview with Channel 24, three of the band members divulged some of their secret quirks. Did you know:

  • Matt Sorum always takes his wife on tour with him. In the past, he wore red underwear during a performance and chewed gum until the fifth song before spitting it out.
  • Duff McKagan has to wear a specific bracelet when on tour. “I guess I’m superstitious in that way.”
  • Nuno Bettencourt paints his fingernails black before a show. “And I forgot once. I looked down and I had the worst show, because you see these black dots when you play chords and you get used to that visual!”

Capetonians have a reputation of being a tough audience – often subdued and lacklustre in their response and appreciation of a performer. The Kings of Chaos concert, however, played to a jam-packed room with a very lively and responsive crowd!

“The music was electrifying, the crowd was alive and for two hours these seven rock gods kept us on our feet!” says Lara, still high on that post-show buzz – I could feel the energy and vibe as she chatted about it. “Billy Gibbons was just incredible to watch live on stage and Nuno Bettencourt solo’s wowed the crowd.  Steve Tyler was, of course, just the cherry on my proverbial cake, walking on stage to the crowd erupting in loud roars of approval!”

The show also performed at the Sun City Casino and Resort in South Africa’s North West province, and since 2012 has also been to South America, Australia (playing at the Stone Music Festival) and the USA.

Video: Lara Hinrichsen