By Gerry Gittelson
Melodicrock.com Los Angeles correspondent
LOS ANGELES, Calif., USA -- Once the darlings of rock radio in the 1970s, The Babys are back together after a long absence, and the former teen-idol band took a big step forward on Jan. 31 in a sold-out concert before a crowd of about 700 at the Lido Theatre in Newport Beach south of Los Angeles.
With a legion of baby boomers crowded up front and pumping their fists, The Babys tore through a nearly two-hour set that featured all the biggest hits like "Head First," "Midnight Rendez-Vous" and an especially well-executed version of "Isn't It Time."
Originals Wally Stocker (guitar) and Tony Brock (drums) still have the chops, and both still look pretty cool -- Brits never age, right? -- and The Babys have welcomed new singer John Bisaha, a redhead just like John Waite, who is not an easy man to replace.
The Babys have legitimized their comeback with a new album called "I'll Have Some of That!" that includes a new Billboard hot sales hit called "I See You There."
Bisaha, who also plays bass, proved in fine vocal form. He hits all the notes, and though he does not sound exactly like Waite -- no one does -- Bisaha comes close, and what's definitely clear is the new singer is overflowing with natural talent.
Another guitarist named Joey Sykes is also on board, and two female backup singers plus side keyboard player Francesco Staglietti add autenticity.
The Babys opened with "Back on My Feet Again," and that gave the band momentum from the very beginning. Some of the other highlights were "Every Time I Think of You," "Postcard," "Love Don't Prove I'm Right" and "Wrong or Right."
The standing-room-only crowd was really into it. The Babys have a good chance to make an impact -- the group is playing in New York and Philadelphia in June -- so they're definitely a classic-rock band to keep on eye on.
Check 'em out on thebabysofficial.com