With any luck, the set for the June 20 Styx/REO Speedwagon/Journey triple-bill will be a faux prison -- orange jumpsuits, bars, balls, chains and all. Anyone who willfully attends this concert will be pleading guilty to three counts of dinosaur-rock pleasure and sentenced to life in the klink of prom-night slow-dancing. This, folks, is how dino-rock is meant to be served up: a full-course meal. Give us some "Mr. Roboto" appetizer, a "Can't Fight This Feelin'" entrée and a "Don't Stop Believin'" dessert, we'll get a full stomach of tear-soaked power chords and we'll go to bed happy. But where, may we ask, is the coffee? Specifically, why isn't Boston -- which plays UMB Bank Pavilion on July 19 -- rounding out what might have been the Grand Slam of power-ballad concerts? Go figure.
Not that this Triple Crown is anything to sneeze at. One wonders why Adam Sandler didn't recruit these three acts to score The Wedding Singer all by their lonesome -- surely an MTV Movie Award would have ensued. Anyway, in case anyone was wondering, here's how you do the Styx/REO/Journey thing right. First, get an eightball of blow from your West County hookup. Second, reserve a limo -- preferably a white one -- for you, your buds and the big-haired honeys and, in the interest of historical accuracy, stock it with every flavor of Bartles & Jaymes wine coolers. As you power through the chalk and the syrupy fifths, whip on a red Mike Reno headband, crank the stereo -- domo, arigato, Mr. Roboto, Himitsu wo shiri tai -- and start catcalling at the top of your lungs out the limo's sunroof. Finally, roll up to Savvis all amped up 'n shnizzle. It's Friday night, after all. Tommy Shaw wouldn't have it any other way.