Langley (By Tom Paile) – Prism played the Cascades Casino in Langley this past week.
You remember Prism from the 70’s and 80’s? ‘Spaceship Superstar’ ‘Armageddon’ ‘See Forever Eyes’? Well, this is a different version from those memories. With the passing of original Prism singer Ronny Tabak back in ‘84, the front man is now Vancouver native Al Harlow, who originally played bass guitar and sang backing vocals. Fortunately, Al has that ‘Superstar” quality onstage, in spades.
Wild costumes, crazy poses mid-note, infectious energy. He got the crowd into the show right from the opening keyboard riff for ‘Spaceship Superstar’. Now the lead guitarist, Al has recruited members Tad Goddard on bass, Marc Gladstone on keyboards, and Gary Grace on drums. This has been the lineup since 2010 and they have recently been back in the studio for new music which will soon be available ‘on Youtube’, joked Al. The track they played was pretty good and shows that Prism may still be relevant in the local rock scene as more than just another reunion band.
The hits just kept coming with ‘Flyin’, ‘See Forever Eyes’, ‘Virginia’, ‘Night to Remember’ ‘Mirror Man’. Their years on the road showed how professional acts with so much live experience can enthrall us with the music, the stories and the memories that the music brings back. Some strong guitar work by Al (especially some great slide play) and a killer drum solo from Gary were some of the show highlights.
After a quick costume change into a Sgt. Pepperish style jacket, Al was ready to close out the show with the epic hit ‘Armageddon’. The crowd matched him word for word. The encore of ‘Take Me to the Kaptain’ was a perfect ending. It made for a magical night. Ya, the vocals aren’t quite what they were, the lighting hid the signs of time but no one there that night cared or even noticed.
It was a great time with an old friend.