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- Posted on Jul 19th 2010 1:00PM by Steve Baltin
Neil Lupin, Redferns
The L.A. show was held at Eagle Rock Performing Arts Center, a building that had the feel of a recreation center, at five in the afternoon for maybe 200 people, including Rage guitarist Tom Morello. Though it had been two years since De La Rocha promised One Day as a Lion would take the stage, he and the amazing Theodore tried to keep it as hype-free as the setting, walking through the airy, sunlit building from the back of the room to the stage around 5:40PM.
The duo, joined by keyboardist Joey Karam of Locust, put all the intensity into the music, opening with 'Ocean View' from their self-titled EP. Given how Rage's legacy has grown since their breakup and de la Rocha's scarcity of new material in the last decade, much of the focus in ODAAL will surely be on him. He delivered exactly what fans wanted in the 40-minute set, pumping up the crowd -- and himself -- by leaping around the stage like a kangaroo at the opening of 'Lion Dance.' His raps were delivered with the same fervor as his Rage rhymes, but on this night he smiled throughout and joked with the crowd.
And why shouldn't he have been happy? In Theodore, he's found a perfect foil for his high-energy rhymes. The drummer was a revelation, with the precision of a drum machine during 'Ocean View' and 'Rockers, Rocker,' both played with the fury of Keith Moon.
The duo -- or trio for these shows as well as some upcoming international dates -- also showcased multiple new songs over the two nights, indicating that perhaps the follow-up album to the EP, which was originally intended for 2009, may be in the future (no release is scheduled). We hope so, since these live gigs proved is One Day as a Lion, while still new, have the potential to be a powerful force in rock.