After touring with his band VandenBerg Moonkings, Adrian made the bold decision to resurrect the group that ignited his musical journey: VandenBerg. Spearheading the resurgence and promoting their latest album, Sin, the band concluded their Dutch tour with the invaluable support of Marco Mendoza in Zwolle.
These days, it’s a rarity to go to a concert with my dad. But when I saw that VandenBerg was playing close, it was the perfect opportunity to go together and have a great night rocking out.
Legendary bass player Marco Mendoza was the special guest on tonight’s show. The American bassist made a name for himself playing for bands like Whitesnake, Thin Lizzy, The Dead Daisies and Journey. But his solo material is worth the listen as well. A few years ago, I saw Marco play in Amsterdam on the Viva La Rock Tour and had a great time. Now he was out and about promoting his latest album, New Direction.
Tonight Marco Mendoza was playing a great 10 song strong set. Including obviously Viva La Rock, New Direction and Sweetest Emotions. Great tunes written by the man himself. Some of the covers tonight were Hey Baby from Ted Nugent and Chinatown from Thin Lizzy.
The band existed, apart from bassist Mendoza, out of drummer Chris Allan and guitarist Drew Lowe. They put on a heck of a show, and although vocal wise it wasn’t always crystal clear, Mendoza still sounded great. It was the perfect warm-up and I already had a good time.
While VandenBerg is undoubtedly renowned worldwide as the former guitarist of Whitesnake. His stature in the Netherlands shines even brighter as the founder of his eponymous band, predating his tenure with Coverdale’s group in the ’80s. With VandenBerg, he achieved significant success with the hit Burning Hearts. Legal complications necessitated performances under the moniker VandenBerg’s Moonkings, a band I’ve had the pleasure of seeing multiple times. Thankfully, these legal hurdles have been overcome, annoucing the triumphant return of the original band, VandenBerg, alongside the release of a new album.
Hit the Ground Running kicked off this electrifying set followed up by Freight Train and a throwback to Adrian’s first album Your Love Is In Vain. The first nod to his Whitesnake days happened with Fool for Your Loving, before going back to the 2020 album with Shadows of the Night.
VandenBerg is a wicked band, and I got to say Adrian VandenBerg sounded absolutely amazing tonight. His solos were on point, and he looked liked he was having a blast on stage. But it’s not just about the Dutch guitarist. No, the band includes lead singer Mats Levén, drummer Koen Herfst, and bassist Randy van der Elsen. They sounded super tight and the singer had a great voice.
A highlight in this show for both my dad and I was Sailing Ships. Just a guitar and vocals, creating goosebumps throughout the crowd. Sin, Ride Like the Wind, Wait, Different Worlds and Light It Up kept the rocking train going.
Here I Go Again finished the main set, and as you can imagine this was a massive sing along. The encore included the massive hit Burning Heart, which sounded amazing. The switch from acoustic to electric guitar was seamless. Friday Night closed a great set. I’m glad VandenBerg is back! The show was awesome, the performance was on point, and it seemed the band was enjoying the gig as much as the crowd.
I had a blast at the show, and I’m so glad to share this experience with my dad!