Leg­ends of rock in class of their own

Shows by su­per group line-up you won’t see in the UK or the US

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - THERESE OWEN

WHEN they walked into the room, clad in black with sunglasses, there was no doubt th­ese men were rock stars.

This new ren­di­tion of the Kings of Chaos had ar­rived in the form of ZZ Top’s Billy Gib­bons, Ex­treme’s Nuno Bet­ten­court and Guns N’ Roses and Vel­vet Re­volvers’ Matt So­rum, Duff McKa­gan and Gilby Clarke.

Miss­ing at the me­dia con­fer­ence yes­ter­day in Sand­ton was Aero­smith’s Steve Tyler, who was “sa­fari­ing” at the Vic­to­ria Falls.

“He’s hop­ing to catch the Big Five,” joked So­rum, the brains be­hind the project.

Each year, he puts to­gether dif­fer­ent mem­bers of leg­endary rock bands to form a su­per-group that then per­forms each other’s big hits at se­lected con­certs.

This is the sec­ond time Kings of Chaos have played in South Africa. Last year’s con­cert in­cluded Slash as well as mem­bers from Def Lep­pard and Deep Pur­ple.

The first con­certs are tak­ing place on Satur­day and Sun­day at Sun City, be­fore mov­ing to Grand West Arena in Cape Town on Tues­day.

The mood at the brief­ing was jovial with much ban­ter be­tween the world-fa­mous mu­si­cians. All agreed that this ex­pe­ri­ence was spe­cial, not only for the au­di­ence and fans but for them too.

“You will never see this con­cert in the UK or the US,” So­rum said.

“You will never see Steve Tyler play­ing Guns N’ Roses hits with mem­bers of Guns N’ Roses. This is a unique ex­pe­ri­ence, just for South Africans.”

“I call it a col­li­sion of en­thu­si­asm,” an­nounced Gib­bons in his Texan drawl.

When Gib­bons was asked by the master of cer­e­monies at the con­fer­ence, Highveld’s Alex Jay, what he would be tak­ing back to add to his col­lec­tion of South African art, the ZZ Top gui­tarist replied: “A bowl of mopane worms. I can see them and they can see me.”

There was an awk­ward mo­ment when for­mer 5FM pre­sen­ter Gareth Cliff ’s pro­ducer tried to ask a ques­tion, only to be thwarted by Jay, who briskly took away the mi­cro­phone in re­tal­i­a­tion for Cliff ’s state­ment ear­lier this year that “ra­dio is dead”.

After mut­ter­ing un­der his breath, Jay re­lented and re­turned it to al­low Cliff ’s pro­ducer to ask his ques­tion.

The Kings of Chaos con­certs will be drawn from hits by ZZ Top, Aero­smith, Guns N’ Roses, Cheap Trick and Ex­treme.

Tick­ets are still avail­able for the Sun­day show at Sun City on a buy-two-get-two free ba­sis.

Read to­mor­row’s Tonight for an ex­clu­sive in­ter­view with Gib­bons in which he re­lates sto­ries of his five­month stay in South Africa.

PIC­TURES: AN­TOINE DE RAS

GET­TING AC­CLI­MA­TISED: Of South African cui­sine, ZZ Top’s Billy Gib­bons en­joys mopane worms. “I can see them and they can see me,” he says.

READY TO ROLL: Five of the leg­endary rock­ers from the su­per­group Kings of Chaos – Matt So­rum, Nuno Bet­ten­court, Billy Gib­bons, Duff McKa­gan and Gilby Clarke. The group will per­form two shows at the Lost City in North West at the week­end.

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