Thursday, 20 June 2013

Vintage Trouble (and Strife)

It took me a while to warm to Vintage Trouble. I tossed Classic Rock magazine's freebie sampler CD onto the reject pile after one play and forgot all about them. Then, last year, I happened upon a cheap copy of their The Bomb Shelter Sessions album on vinyl and figured that I could always sell it on if it failed to move me. It's going nowhere: what a fantastic LP!

Combining elements of Soul, Blues and Rock, but with the emphasis most definitely on Soul, The Bomb Shelter Sessions is a complete breath of fresh air in an era where most backwards-looking bands settle for apeing their Sixties and Seventies heroes rather than using them as the inspiration for creating something new and vibrant.

Classy on record, in a live setting Vintage Trouble prove that they are undoubtedly world class. It's no accident that both The Who and The Rolling Stones have been falling over themselves to enlist them as special guests on their respective tours. I dragged the (vintage) trouble 'n strife (Mrs Shelf-Stacker) along to the Electric in Brixton on Monday night to check out their show. And a show it most certainly was, with a captivating, perfectly-paced set that delivered soul, groove, humour and strutting sexual energy. The band seamlessly combined material as diverse as the intimate and delicate protest song Not Alright By Me with the rocking fireworks of Blues Hand Me Down without ever abandoning the Soul at the core of their DNA.

Vocalist Ty Taylor has a once in a generation voice that is equal parts Al Green, Otis Redding, Terence Trent D'Arby and Ben Harper. His boundless energy and between song patter make him a thoroughly arresting frontman. Don't be fooled into thinking that his musical accomplices are a faceless backing band though, not with such engaging personalities to complement their musical chops and unwavering groove. Special mention must go to Nalle Col's slide guitar on Run Baby Run and to drummer Richard Danielson's moustache which looks like it was stolen from the set of Deadwood. Spectacular!

Monday night's gig was one of those where the audience hung on every word, sang along to every lyric, punctuated every beat with their raised hands and noisily acknowledged the band's stellar performance. I can't claim that everyone in attendance on Monday night was united in their enthusiasm. Sadly, Mrs Shelf-Stacker spent half the evening thumbing her Blackberry. If only that was some kind of a sexual euphemism! But no, she just didn't get it. Not one bit. Obviously there weren't nearly enough galloping riffs, songs about Satan or moments of foot on the monitor posturing! Perhaps Vintage Trouble could address these issues before they tour again.

What better reason to bring the Face Fungus-ometer out of retirement than that magnificent 'tache!

An aptly Deadwood honouring, Western-themed Magnificent Seven!

No comments:

Post a Comment