Homegrown - Alive in Lugano

2011, Nuclear Blast
Hard Rock

L'ultimo grande concerto di Lugano a un anno dalla scomparsa di Steve Lee...

Review by Gaetano Loffredo - Publish on: 05/10/11

Dear Steve, thank you for the amazing and unforgettable rock n' roll night in Lugano... we are sure the angels have now got one of the best frontmen in the world! You will always stay in our hearts. The Gotthard family.

Today, 5 October 2011, a story comes to an end and a new one is about to be told; today is the day when Steve Lee’s era ends, and tomorrow we’ll tell the beginning of a new era for Gotthard: the family holds together and is ready for a new start after a tragedy that would have caused any weaker group to split into thousand pieces.
Exactly one year after the early passing of one of the best singers that the world of hard rock has ever seen, his friends and colleagues Leo Leoni, Mark Lynn, Hena Habegger and Freddy Schrerer cancel all negative thoughts and talk about him again with some peace of mind, paying a tribute to him with an album that should have never come to light, a live album that, after that tragic event, is there to remember Steve in the best time of his career but also to carve a forced “the end”. Impossible to imagine twelve months ago, and still hard as hell to accept.

It’s the voice that will stay forever, a warm, powerful, expressive tone. The memory of the man, not just the singer, will remain too, because Steve Lee was the friendliest person, as well as artist, that a fan or a journalist could have ever dreamt of meeting at least once in their life. A life that came to an end, yet a soul that shines like a star in the sky showing his mates that the right way to go is the one they have chosen: Gotthard cannot and don’t want to die down like Steve’s life, they must go on because they are the soul.
Steve’s last farewell is an extraordinary live album, and the undersigned was standing just two metres away from the stage in the crowd of Lugano, 17 July 2010 (watch the exclusive pics), surrounded by the old walls of Riforma Square. It was a day in the name of rock, Swiss Harley Days, faithfully presented in the album you are about to listen: "Homegrown – Alive In Lugano". A year ago we would already have wanted to praise a great, amazing show led by a self-confident Steve and taken to an even upper level by Leo Leoni, whose performance was out of the common that night while his bandmates closely followed. Twenty thousand fans crowded that square and their voices in the album are much more than just a colorful note: they are one with Steve, with Leo, they are the heart and soul of the product.

The album is made up of sixteen tracks and a new studio song, “The Train”, which was planned to be released in the second chapter of Defrosted, of which a future release is not scheduled as of now. Reading the lyrics of this song, which is about the metaphore of the train of life, can be painful: it’s like foreseeing what was about to happen to poor Steve, who lets himself go on the pure notes of Leo Leoni’s acoustic guitar one last time. Moving.
The setlist of the show is focused on the newest studio album, “Need To Believe”, from which a number of songs are taken. Many remarkable moments make this product unique and a must-have for the fans: the duet between girls and guys in the audience that Steve called for on the  notes of “Hush”, the bagpipes of “Lucerne Caledonians” at the end of “Unconditional Faith”, the solo duel bteween Leo and Freddy in the middle of “I Don’t Mind”, the heartbreaking acoustic medley with “Sweet Little Rock n’ Roller”, “Angel” and “One Life One Soul”, the magical moment, now also sad, of “Heaven” where Steve says thanks to paradise, still one more wonderful duel guitar & voice between Leo and Steve before the rock explosion of “Sister Moon”, and the ending of “Anytime Anywhere” where the singer makes a promise he could never keep: to be back in that square where the star was born and – as we said – shines in heaven now.

The elegant digipack also includes a dvd with four tracks from the Millenium Show that the guys held once again in Riforma Square, on New Year’s Eve, to celebrate the beginning of the new millennium. One more must-have to be worn out and treasured. To provide a great end, a long interview to the band members in memory of their dear friend.

Steve Lee’s life was a dream, and like a dream it vanished too soon. “Homegrown – Alive In Lugano” is the will of a man who lived only to honour his passion; now you say thanks to him by buying a copy – you’ll keep his voice in your hearts, and he’ll give you a smile from above. Goodbye Steve.

Translation made by Elisa Bonora
All text are property of


01. Intro
02. Unspoken Words
03. Gone Too Far
04. Top Of The World
05. Need To Believe
06. Hush
07. Unconditional Faith
08. Acoustic Medley 2010
09. Shangri La
10. I Don't Mind
11. Heaven
12.The Oscar Goes To
13. Lift U Up
14. Leo vs. Steve [Guitar-/Vocal-Solo]
15. Sister Moon
16. Anytime Anywhere
17. The Train


01. Let It Rain (Millenium Show Lugano Dec. 1999)
02. Acoustic Medley 1999 (Millenium Show Lugano Dec. 1999)
03. One Life, One Soul (Millenium Show Lugano Dec. 1999)
04. Hey Jimi (Millenium Show Lugano Dec. 1999)
05. One Year (Interviews / EPK)

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