Photo Diva: Sinners in Sin City

Picture this: there’s a large crowd at the foot of the stage, mostly consisting of daring women in their late 20’s to late 40’s, practically throwing themselves at the gorgeous rock star at the front of the stage, who is tossing his hair about and gyrating to the music coming through pounding speakers and lit by the pulsating strobe lights. No, I’m not describing a scene from the recent Bon Jovi concert, that was the scene for Sin City Sinners on a Saturday night inside Ovation at Green Valley Ranch Hotel and Casino. It was pheromone mayhem…I’m not kidding.

Sin City Sinners rocking Ovation inside Green Valley Ranch

Sin City Sinners is one of those local rock bands that plays some original tunes mixed into a set that is about 70% cover tunes, rearranged to make them more their own style. (It may be hard to imagine ’80s New Wave hits like Soft Cell’s “Tainted Love” done with big rock guitars and no keyboards but the Sinners make it work.) Unlike many local bands who just do their own stuff, these guys have a large and rabid following…one which voted them the number #1 favorite band on the Stations Casino lineup in a recent online poll. I didn’t even have to get through the first song before I understood why. Their show is fueled by the Jim Morrison like sexuality of frontman Todd Kerns on vocals and guitar and the magnetism of Brent Muscat on guitar, Rob Cournoyer on drums and Michael Ellis on bass.

It’s not often that I’m blown away by local bands, especially those who only play their original material because the band may be great but the material is often, well, lacking. But, by weaving their own stuff between hits everyone knows, this incredibly talented group manages to make their original songs feel familiar. One of their songs in particular – “It’s Not You, It’s Me” from their debut CD Exile On Fremont Street – has mega-hit written all over it. And for every tune that you have heard 1000 cover bands play–like Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way” and Billy Idol’s “Rebel Yell”–they’ll throw a curveball that keeps it all much more interesting. My particular favorite rendition was Johnny Cash’s “Ring Of Fire” but the majority of the women in the audience seemed to prefer Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar On Me’ – especially since the guys pulled them all up onto the stage to strut their stuff.

Frontman Todd Kearns and drummer Rob Cournoyer
of Sin City Sinners

To top it all off, Ovation inside Green Valley Ranch is a state-of-the-art venue with top of the line audio and lighting equipment and crew so you really get the full rock n roll effect but if you can’t make it to the southside, never fear, you can catch the Sinners regularly at the VooDoo Lounge inside The Rio and other venues around town so keep an eye out. You won’t regret it.