Alice Cooper Pemberton Stage, Pemberton BC, July 18

Alice Cooper Pemberton Stage, Pemberton BC, July 18
Photo: Joshua Peter Grafstein
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The charcoal-smudged eyes of Alice Cooper, spanning the length of the Pemberton stage on a massive backdrop, stared down the crowd anxiously awaiting the shock rocker. A late edition to the line-up, Alice Cooper's set was a spectacle, with an elaborate stage set, as he sauntered around with cane in hand — which was tossed into the crowd during "No More Mr. Nice Guy" — and an immense backing band.
 
In shock rock, props reign, so a fencing sword skewered with bills dangled from Cooper's gloved hand, dispensing a flurry of green into the photo pit (presumably, it missed its mark, and should have gone further into the audience). Next came a riding crop, used briefly to point at the crowd before being turned on a roadie to chase him off stage during "Lost in America."
 
Though the energy was high and decades-old guitar riffs proliferated, Cooper at times seemed more like a centrepiece, often leaving the vocals up to his backup singers. Most tracks ended with Cooper flanked by guitarists and bass player staring ardently, waiting for their cue to cut it. Despite its theatrical nature, it was still a set to catch, Alice Cooper a name one would surely regret missing.