Although I have been to concerts at Galery in Pratteln many times, it´s my first in official function. Galery is located in a shopping mall, well known for its food (which bands like e.g. Circle II Circle enjoyed, too). The „little sister of Z7“ organizes small rock concerts in a cosy environment – sofas, framed pictures and many small details create its particular appeal.
The support is provided by German Thrashers Metalety who replace the Finns Masterstroke; they had to cancel at short notice due to their drummer´s arm injury.Too bad as this band would have been the better choice – not meaning that Metalety don´t play good music – it just doesn´t fit to Jeff Scott Soto and his music. Which shows in the audience, too – the majority prefers to stay outside, only a few people approach the stage.
After waiting a while, finally Jeff Scott Soto and his band enter the stage – top styling in black and white, plus sun glasses. The small concert area has filled up in the meantime and it´s not easy to reach the stage to make photos, but luckily fans let you squeeze in for this purpose for the first three songs. You got to admire this guy, he is a real entertainer, dancing around on stage – which does not quite fit the music, but it looks good. Seeing him up there you´d never guess that Soto is 46 years old – good genes, probably. He is well known for his projects with Yngwie J. Malmsteen, Axel Rudi Pell and Journey – clearly he is one of the major voices in the business. And he proves it once again, although there are some glitchees after the first few songs, probably caused by his cold. The set list is diverse, offering not only his own songs but also songs of his former bands/projects, e.g. „Brothers in Arms“ by W.E.T, or„Blissful Garden“ by Talisman. And he inspires the audience to sing along, yet Lady Gaga is not a good choice – he receives some (not quite serious) BOOs, because Swiss rockers simply don´t like Gaga. No wonder the sing-along thing does not work out for this one. Jeff says that „in 20 years you are the first who stop singing when we stop – shame on you!“ The audience then naturally makes up for it, and Jeff Scott Soto with his band rounds up a good and diverse show. He was definitely worth those 40 Franks which is pretty much for such a small club.