Vancouver Critic Not Impressed With Chickenfoot Show

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The new supergroup Chickenfoot has hit the road to showcase material from their forthcoming CD, and at least one music critic was not at all impressed with the show at Vancouver’s Commodore Ballroom. Steve Newton, writing for, was particularly disappointed with Sammy Hagar’s performance, and was not particularly impressed with former Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony either.

I don’t normally headline a music critic’s opinion here, since the whole professional critic thing is of questionable value if you ask me. “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” an old adage that holds true for just about everything. image While one rock fan may think the Rolling Stones are the greatest rock band in the world, another may think they suck. We all have our own opinions and they are neither right or wrong. The same rule applies to critics – music or otherwise.

What made this review interesting is that it was the first one I have seen for Chickenfoot. In addition, there were a few readers who came to the group’s defense without holding too much back. Overall, it appears that the Chickenfoot defenders outnumbered those who agreed with Newton.

Newton’s main problems with Chickenfoot seem centered around Sammy Hagar’s vocals, suggesting that Hagar “grab himself a bottle of that premium tequila he so proudly promotes and head off into the Cabo sunset.”

Newton says he was a Hagar fan during his time with Montrose and even liked some of the material he did with Van Halen, but apparently feels it is time for the 61-year-old to put down the microphone for good.

There was high praise for guitarist Joe Satriani, who, in this case is considered too accomplished to be on stage with the aging Hagar and the “lowly” Michael Anthony. Certainly something that dedicated old school Van Halen fans may take issue with. Newton predicts that Satriani will tire of wasting his talent on Chickenfoot and leave the group so he can “go back to being an adventurous axeman of the highest order…”

There’s been a good bit of hype surrounding the birth of this new group, and people are not forgetting Hagar’s comments a while back about rivaling Led Zeppelin, although he did back away from that statement later, saying he had been tipping the bottle before making that statement and admitting it was “stupid” thing to say.

As Chickenfoot continues on their tour, we will surely be hearing from other critics, and it will be interesting to see how their take on the new group compares to Newton’s.

You can read Steve Newton’s review at


  1. russ May 18, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    I wrote the first reply to Steve’s review……….everyone is welcome to an opinion but calling someone names(lowly)is just not a good policy.Thought Michael’s harmony singing was a huge plus.A real nice show which deserved a better review…..everyone else seemed to enjoy it.

  2. Another Rocker July 3, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    Ok steve, the only thing that sucks here it´s you. I know it is not the greatest band people were expecting, but it´s a great band (way better than the today rock bands). So if you think the band sucks, leave it to yourself, otherwise you should consider getting a real job.

  3. Scott Smith May 30, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    Chickenfoot were fantastic at Rocklahoma May 27. Hagar was in great voice, Anthony was in great voice, Satriani was his usual brilliant self, and Kenny Aronoff was so great on the drums that I didn’t miss Chad Smith at all. Chad is a fine drummer, but Kenny can do anything Chad can do and more. Chickenfoot had a ton of energy, were happy onstage (all four of them were smiling all night long at each other and the fans), the instrumental interplay was impressive, and Hagar signed hats and posters for those on the first two or three rows during the show. They gave 150 percent, and the audience gave it right back at the band. Good stuff. A lot better than the recent Van Halen show I caught (which was still good, but kinda paled to Chickenfoot’s inspired set.)

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