"There are things known," Jim Morrison said, "and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors." More than thirty years after his death, the Lizard King still throws a hell of a party (as officials of the Paris cemetery where he's buried are always complaining). So it comes as no surprise to hear reports that Morrison's soul infuses performances of The Doors of the 21st Century. Reuniting original Doors members Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger, this 21st-century version is fronted by the Cult's Ian Astbury and backed up by Angelo Barbera on bass and Ty Dennis on drums as it breathes new life into those psychedelic, sensuous tracks from the '60s. The reincarnation was inspired by an installment of VH-1: Storytellers, during which the three surviving Doors (drummer John Densmore is the third) were joined by various modern vocalists, including Astbury, on the band's classic hits. Manzarek and Krieger enjoyed giving live audiences a taste of history, and the two later agreed to re-create Doors songs at several Harley-Davidson events, which led to the current tour. Astbury was a perfect fit for the 21st Century, because he fuses Morrison-esque styles with his own distinct, Cultish presence. While still retaining the magical essence of the Doors, this band also has a strong sense of the present that keeps the homage from feeling anything like a Vegas knockoff. In fact, this show should light a fire for both fans of the first incarnation and new listeners alike. You'll love them madly when the Doors of the 21st Century break on through to the Universal Lending Pavilion this Friday, June 18.


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