Relatively thin pickings this month, and not just here – not much happening over at the metal ‘n’ prog picks either (but some great stuff there to fill any gaps in your gig calendar, particularly Radio Moscow with their warped blues). We do have great local talent, washboard driven bonkers rockabillycana, and a genuine Americana iconoclast though. We also have the reassurance of a splendid autumn ahead though so see you down the front meanwhile.
Rock’n’Reel magazine described TWF as “fuzzicana” when delivering their four star review of the band’s Green to Dust recording, which is the sort of description that has instant appeal here. The five piece take a lot of liberties with Americana & Country, and in doing so create something really quite different. So if you fancy something unusual (e.g. pedal steel through a distortion box) then get over to the Lion. And if you’re not convinced, support comes from Samuel Silas Whitlock ex-Montgomery, who has been building up a head of steam with his solo career – read more here and get there early to check him out.
Although a big damn band these guys are actually a trio, but then if the three of them are capable of holding their own supporting the mighty Clutch, playing numerous biker events in the State and doing so armed only with a washboard, guitar and drums then they are a Damn Big Band. Their most recent recording Front Porch Sessions was only prevented from a number one spot in the blues by the Strolling Bones, which ain’t bad going. Live they whip up a raucous, rambunctious storm of fingerpickin’, washboardin’ and drummin’ and the songs hold up too, catchy and danceable.
It’s not unique nowadays for a “band” to be the work of an individual with a revolving cast of musicians live and in the studio, and Kurt Wagner has used this policy to his advantage over the past coupla decades Although ostensibly American / alt.country / whatever, he’s used his time to creat and evolving and eclectic body of work that has both confounded and delighted fans and critics. Splendid. Catch him live. It’s also a real pleasure to see Roxanne de Bastion on the bill – an artist with a gorgeous voice and a knack of writing delightful tunes, she supported Hayes Carll a while back and delighted the crowd. Get there early, you will not be disappointed.
No, none of them are girls and the origins of the band are frankly bonkers (but must be true, because nobody could make this up surely?). Regardless of the band’s genesis, they kick up a massive racket on stage – rather excitedly described as the hillbilly Guns n’ Roses by the Australian press (let’s hope that wasn’t due to starting the show 3 hours late) – so expect the Tunnels to be rocking.
The Husky Tones continue to thrive as a slimmed down, politically charged duo – cranking out riffs and touring the arse out of Who Will I Turn to Now covering the length and breadth of the country. It’s good to have them back home for a gig, and they’re not just sitting on their laurels, check out their cracking cover of a tune by another local act below. This is another of those value for money Louie gigs too, £5 (adv) / £6 (doors) gets you two support acts: the fabulously named Discount Columbo (“Bristol Britpop”) and Toriah Fontaine (“powerhouse blues”). Eclectic bill, cracking venue, VFM – don’t tell me you’re gonna be sat at home watching Prejudice at Poldark Abbey?
Wow – just look at the size of the list below, luxuriate in its quality and salivate at the thought of all that talent coming to town. Then check your diary, check you budget and realise it’s gonna be tough to do them all. But don’t be crying in to your drink for too long as plenty of these shows will sell out so stop your moping and buy tickets. Now – support your local music scene, especially small venues – use ‘em or lose ‘em.
Michael Chapman, Grain Barge: Saturday, 09 Sep
John Murry, Tunnels: Thursday, 14 Sep
Danny & the Champions of the World, Lantern: Monday, 18 Sep
Jess & the Bandits, Tunnels: Thursday, 21 Sep
Kirk Fletcher, Tunnels: Sunday, 24 Sep
Erja Lyytinen, Tunnels: Tuesday, 26 Sep
Sheelanagig, Lantern: 30-Sep
Slaid Cleaves, Tunnels: Sunday, 01 Oct
Little Big Town, Colston Hall: Tuesday, 03 Oct
Cardboard Fox, St. Georges: Sunday, 15 Oct
Jarrod Dickenson, Louisiana: Sunday, 15 Oct
Walter Trout, Bierkeller: Friday, 20 Oct
Brandy Clark, St. Georges: Saturday, 21 Oct
Mad Dog Mcrea, Bierkeller: Saturday, 21 Oct
Wille & the Bandits, Fleece: Thursday, 26 Oct
The Sadies, Tunnels: Sunday, 29 Oct
John Mayall, Colston Hall: Sunday, 05 Nov
Harrow Fair, Tunnels: Tuesday, 07 Nov
Simon McBride, Tunnels: Monday, 13 Nov
Joanne Shaw Taylor, Colston Hall: Tuesday, 14 Nov
Crow Black Chicken, Tunnels: Wednesday, 15 Nov
Sari Schorr, Louisiana: Thursday, 16 Nov
Samantha Fish, Tunnels: Tuesday, 21 Nov
Van Morrison, Colston Hall: Tuesday, 21 Nov
Tom Russell, Thekla: Thursday, 23 Nov
Molsky’s Mountain Drifters, St. Georges: Friday, 24 Nov
JW Jones, Thunderbolt: Saturday, 25 Nov
Mark Lanegan, Trinity: Monday, 27 Nov
Songhoy Blues, Anson: Friday, 01 Dec
Chantel McGregor, Tunnels: Sunday, 10 Dec
Ainsley Lister, Tunnels: Tuesday, 12 Dec