The testosterone was flowing fast and furious at the House of Blues on Monday. At the first of seven sold-out nights, the reunited Cult strutted through a fast-paced set heavy on supercharged rock riffing as at least three all-out brawls erupted on the dance floor.
"It's a game," declared singer Ian Astbury. "It's about us coaxing you to lose your inhibitions and be free. Can you do it?"
Apparently so. But whether Monday's crowd-surfers were there to actually hear the Cult or to make a desperate stab at nostalgia hardly mattered. Astbury and guitarist Billy Duffy led the hard-rock quintet--reunited after a four-year hiatus-- with a welcome intensity.
Dressed in snakeskin jeans, Astbury sang chest-beating songs of "freedom" and "revolution" in a voice that was part Steven Tyler, part Jim Morrison. But the sound of the Cult was retro only in part, owing as much to Duffy's punk-edged riffing as to '70s hard rock.