This quartet left their mark on the 90s. At a time when grunge was about to engulf the planet in its filthy wave, they held high the banner of resistance. With their hard melodic sound, their virtuoso technicality, the precursor of shredding, and Eric Martin's flamboyant voice, they are the brilliant successor to 80s rock, taking it through the ages with a passion and modernity that neither the musical styles that follow one another, nor their own separation, will hinder.
Because Mr. Big is a multi-faceted phoenix. Paul Guilbert on guitar, always ready to send sparks flying with his stratospherically precise solos. Then there's Billy Sheehan, the bass addict whose fingers seem glued to his instrument. The late Pat Torpey, who slammed his snare drum like no other, and of course, the powerful voice of the iconic Martin on vocals.
When you throw these four geniuses into the ring, you're bound to come up with something great. The world-famous To Be With You is proof of this, but it's not the only one. Their albums are littered with nuggets of catchy choruses and guitar licks worthy of the heroes' heyday. Clearly, Mr. Big is a band that sails without flinching, and the stage is certainly where they express themselves best.
You have to see the energy of these hard rock darlings live to believe it. They're having the time of their lives, playing bass and guitar with a screwdriver instead of picks! Striding across the stage as if their youth was eternal. And if they've announced their retirement, it's certain that they won't be leaving without a big show of honor!
Mr. Big is often referred to as a supergroup, and with good reason. When they formed in 1988, the musicians all came from well-known bands, and expectations were high. However, their debut album didn't make much of an impression, and it wasn't until 1991's Lean into It that they exploded onto the scene! The ballads To Be With You and Just Take My Heart paved the way for rock classics such as Green-Tinted Sixties Mind. As the world descends into grunge madness, Mr. Big proves that creative hard rock is not dead.
In 1993 and 1996, Bump Ahead and Hey Man completed the discography of Mr. Big, whose hard rock is still going strong. But the following year, Paul Gilbert left the band to devote himself once again to Racer X. Without this founding pillar and his spicy solos, Mr. Big floundered for a few years, trying to find a replacement before going their separate ways in 2002.
But seven years later, with a bang, Mr. Big is back on tour with his original line-up! The news was eagerly awaited by fans, as was the album that followed. What If..., which sounds "as if the band had never stopped", is a concentrate of rhythmic rock, impeccable solos and choruses calibrated to be taken in chorus... A sound which has not suffered from the band's 15-year separation, which brings together their fans from Manila to Paris and heralds the start of a new era.
It's called The Big Finish Tour. Six years after the release of their last album, Mr. Big are hitting the road again for their final tour. "Often people say it's a farewell tour, then they come back, but we want you to know that this is a real farewell tour. We want to say thank you and goodbye, because we really love people," explains Billy Sheehan. So, whether you're a die-hard fan or a young neophyte, you won't want to miss them this time.
For me, they're clearly one of the most creative hard rock bands around, and I was really happy to see them live again after so many years. The level is always top-notch and the stage presence incredible. You can't get enough of their classics, and if they ever come back to France, you'll find me in the front row again!
One of the iconic hard rock bands of the '90s is bowing out with this final tour, even if every fan cherishes the mad hope of a continuation. With their virtuoso and terribly catchy touch, Mr. Big have been a beacon of creativity and hard rock musicality in stormy times, an almost feel-good band always full of energy on stage. So, of course, we'll be in the front row for their next concert.
In the late 1980s, the tides were turning in the music world. Hair metal was adrift and grunge represented the new wave. Through the changing trends, the one thing that remained timeless was exceptional musicianship. One band that didn't really fit into any rock genre was Mr. Big, a group of seasoned musicians.