All photography and content © John Raptis Photography 2020

Ross The Boss Live @ The Croxton Bandroom, Melbourne

There’s a reason why guitarist Ross Friedman goes by the monicker Ross The Boss. Get him on a stage in front of a wall of amps and if the fillings in your teeth don’t start rattling after the first chord, something ain’t right!

Ross was member of Metal stalwarts Manowar for most of the band’s glory years. He is a founding member of both Manowar and Punk legends The Dictators. His work with Manowar covers the band’s best era and albums before they became a raging caricature of themselves. His work on the Manowar albums Battle Hymns (1982), Into Glory Ride (1983), Hail to England (1984), Sign of the Hammer (1984), Fighting The World (1987), Kings of Metal (1988)

Now if the above lot don’t come under some sort of freaking classic musical category then… yeah!

But I digress. We’ll get back to Ross and his crew shortly!

This is the first time I have shot at the Croxton. Last time I was here, my girlfriend and I were at a Sleater Kinney last year sometime and I recalled then there was no designated photo pit.

Thankfully that wasn’t the case for tonight’s show and it turned out to be a fantastic environment to photograph bands in. Great venue and I hope to be back.

Sydney band Night Legion were the first act I caught and I thought they held their own with a brand of Power Metal that went down well with the crowd. They had all the licks and posturing down pat with a charismatic frontman in that old-school Bruce Dickinson mode. They were great

By the time Ross and co hit the stage, everyone was primed and certainly ready. Getting to hear and experience so many Manowar classics nice, loud and live was HUGE! It is a damn shame that Manowar never toured these shores. They seem to be a permanently etched Europe turning band doing the festival circuit over and over and over and have neglected a lot of their fanbase throughout the years.

Let me state from the outset, the onstage amplification was some of the loudest I have ever heard but man oh man, was it incredible.

Ross The Boss

Ross’ playing was superb and cut through the air (and your bones!) with ease. Ably backed by a killer band and memories of Manowar not touring Oz were quickly forgotten.

This was a show out of the box I can assure you and as everyone who was there can attest… one for the ages!

Hail And Kill!

Night Legion

Ross The Boss


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