Rahway, NJ- It will be a loud night of splintering electric guitars, plus hundreds of voices from the audience singing along to their favorite hits, at the Union County Performing Arts Center on May 20. Two adrenaline-inducing tribute bands representing rock legends take the stage at 8 PM: Lez Zeppelin, an all female tribute to the hard rock ‘70s band Led Zeppelin, and Nirvanish, a tribute to the grunge, early ‘90s band Nirvana. From fans that have been fans since Led Zeppelin was founded to those born right after Nirvana’s prime (who grew up listening to their parent’s records), this concert will provide as faithful an experience to the real deal as anyone could find.
Lez Zeppelin, founded in 2004, began to grow in acclaim after being the subject of a 2005 article in SPIN magazine, and subsequently the subject of countless other publications and spots ranging from a front page feature on CNN.com to a nation-wide feature on CBS Good Morning. The band was, and still is, praised for their contributions in a social setting where all-female rock tribute bands were beginning to surface and playing just as hard, fast and mean as their original counterparts. Their self-titled first album was released in 2007 (produced by one of Led Zeppelin’s actual recording engineers, Eddie Kramer), and in 2008, Lez Zeppelin headlined opening night of Tennessee’s Bonnaroo Festival. Lez Zeppelin’s second album, Lez Zeppelin I, was released in 2010. The band took great pains to record this album with the same vintage equipment Led Zeppelin used on their first self-titled album in 1969, including a Fuzzbender stomp box, a ‘50s era Telecaster and Les Paul, a ‘60s era compressor, etc. Their dedication to the fidelity of their recorded music compared to Led Zeppelin’s is a testament to the experience of their live shows.
Nirvanish is just as dedicated to staying faithful to the original Nirvana live experience, both visually and aurally. Nirvanish’s repertoire consists of the Nirvana albums Nevermind (1991), In Utero (1993) and MTV Unplugged in New York (1994) in their entirety, as well as other well-known and lesser-known singles from the grunge sensations (e.g. “About a Girl” and “Negative Creep” from the band’s 1989 debut album Bleach). Nirvanish’s main goal is to satisfy fans who never got to see the band’s namesake during their brief, but singularly important run. The lead singer even resembles the late Kurt Cobain, who has become a visual icon of alternative rock since his death in 1994, in his hair style and color.
Tickets for Lez Zeppelin and Nirvanish range from $20 to $39 and can be purchased online at ucpac.org, over the phone by calling (732) 499-8226 or in person at the box office. Box office hours are Tuesday through Saturday 11 AM- 5 PM, with extended hours of 11 AM- 8 PM on Thursdays.
The Union County Performing Arts Center is located in downtown Rahway at 1601 Irving Street and is easily accessible to major roads and public transportation.