Mike Ness and Social Distortion delivered a powerful set at House of Blues in Orlando last night in front of an electric and packed House. Ness has long epitomized the consummate bad-ass rock and roll front man and he still carries that torch.
Social D is touring in support of Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes, their first studio album in the past seven years. Still they only included two songs from the latest album: “Machine Gun Blues” and “Bakersfield.” Instead of shamelessly pushing the new tunes, they reached deep into their catalog, featuring classics from the past three decades, and throwing in a few nice surprises along the way. Perfect for the fervid fans in attendance.
The band exploded onto the stage with a powerful version of “1945” and immediately ratcheted it up a notch when they moved into crowd favorite, 1983’s “Daddy’s Little Monster,” which pushed the considerably-sized mosh pit into a fever pitch. Then it was directly into their current hit “Machine Gun Blues” and a great singalong version of “Bad Luck” before Ness finally caught his breath.
Ness was energetic and engaged the crowd all night. His signature vocals may have been even a bit more raspy at this point in his career, but still sounded strong considering his three decades of heavy touring.
Longtime sidekick Jonny Wickershamm was back on guitar. He and Ness traded off the lead throughout the evening while bassist Brent Harding and drummer David Hidalgo, Jr kept the hard driving rhythm guiding the set all night. The only issue all night was that the sound mix was a little muddy – especially earlier in the show.
Other setlist highlights included “Story of My Life,” “So Far Away” and another fun singalong, this time to “Six More Miles” – an old Hank Williams cover. The band closed the core sixty minute set with “Nickels and Dimes.”
For the encore, they took the pitch up a notch and started with “Dear Lover” and “Don’t Drag Me Down” before closing it out with powerful versions of fan favorites “Prison Bound” and their fantastic cover of “Ring of Fire.”
Eighty minutes of energy and passion with a set-list clearly designed with the fans in mind; a great night with the greatest hard rocking punkabilly band ever.
- Mommy’s Little Monster
- Machine Gun Blues
- Bad Luck
- So Far Away
- King of Fools
- Story Of My Life
- Sweet & Lowdown
- Reach for the Sky
- Six More Miles (Hank Williams cover)
- Nickels and Dimes
- Dear Lover
- Don’t Drag Me Down
- Prison Bound
- Ring of Fire
Checkout our video snippets of the show on our YouTube channel: Social D in Orlando