Terminal Velocity pump out exciting cover tunes with finesse and style

Shari “Shazz” Richardson; lead singer, Terminal Velocity

Terminal Velocity is one of the most popular and most respected cover bands in the northern Massachusetts, southern New Hampshire area. Lead vocalist Shari “Shazz” Richardson lead the band through several favorites at The Boathouse in Dracut, Massachusetts last night. “Shazz” Richardson nailed a lot of tricky vocal parts in tunes like Queen’s tongue twisting “Tie Your Mother Down,” the narrative in “Twilight Zone,” and the snappy “Uptown Rock.”

“Shazz” Richardson was only one of three essential cornerstone. Guitarist Ken Stiles, bass guitarist Bil Janeiro, and drummer Greg Chase round out this tight, edgy four piece. Stiles’ guitar work was sharp and Janeiro’s bass was rumbling and tumbling on “Bitch” by Rolling Stones. The band also rolled out their rendition of “Miss You” which found drummer Greg Chase and Janeiro coaxing out that popular groove while “Shazz” Richardson captured the cooing chorus lines just right.

Stiles lead the band through the carefully measured paces of Led Zeppelin’s “Ramble On,” using his take on the lead guitar line to recreate that song’s sense of flow, motion. It helped that the rhythm section drove it with muscle. Terminal Velocity next went into “American Band,” a driving piece of classic rock complete with an inspired rhythm section and Janeiro handling lead vocals while Stiles utilized a stinging guitar approach.

Bil Janeiro; bass player, Terminal Velocity

Tight teamwork made Tom Petty’s “You Wreck Me” a roots flavored guitar treat. The band nicely textured the intro notes to Aerosmith’s “Sweet Emotion” before rocking out in that song’s verse to chorus switch ups. “Shazz” Richardson’s high comfort level with her job allowed her to run into and through the crowd with her wireless microphone.

“Shazz” Richardson delivered the lilting vocal melody to Motley Crew’s “Home Sweet Home” by widening, softening her vocal timbre. Stiles filled in the spaces behind her by adding the need lift to his melodic phrase. The quartet made this tune feel large and lofty.

“Shazz” Richardson handled the hip swagger to King Friction’s “Uptown Rock,” which is a cover of the Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars hit “Uptown Funk.” She delivered the stop-start funk appeal on its snappy chorus. Stiles maintained the flowing guitar phrase to Duran Duran’s “Hungry Like A Wolf,” a song that has to maintain a sense of motion for it to work and Terminal Velocity has plenty of motion.

“Shazz” Richardson brought to life the haunted narrative to “Twilight Zone” and fitted it perfectly to the bands recreation of that surreal tune, a tune that is difficult to render because it seems to exist in its own time and space. It’s a disturbing song that can mean a lot of different things but all have to do with some kind of harrowing fate. Setting that mood was another of this cover band’s strengths.

Greg Chase; drummer, Terminal Velocity

By this point in the show it was clear that “Shazz” Richardson and her band mates were on a high. Richardson announced that the date was her first year anniversary singing in this band. She soon jumped into AC/DC’s “Highway To Hell” with the female vocals up high Bon Scott style as the band slammed it home.

Bass guitarist Bil Janeiro played a fabulous knobby low end line during the Kiss classic “Detroit Rock City.” There was plenty of action in those bass notes and it forced the rest of the band to step up their game, resulting in a lead guitar solo by Stiles that packed a sonorous punch.

Terminal Velocity whipped up a version of Van Halen’s “Panama” that captured the spirit of that rocker while observing its studied changes.

Terminal Velocity are on a roll. This four piece has been making a splash all over Bay State and Granite State border town venues. It’s easy to imagine them taking their high flying cover band entertainment to a greater number of bars, restaurants, and nightclubs in the not too distant future.


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