Like Josh Tillman, Rateliff’s early albums are low key folk outings but both have reinvented themselves recently with Rateliff going down the sixties soul route to great effect.
Rateliff is from Missouri in the heart of America and brings with him tonight his six piece band the Night Sweats. His sweet soul voice has a hint of Sam Cooke and its appropriate he covers ‘Having a Party’ as the set closer but it’s also so much more than that. It’s got a deep earthly edge to it that provides a wide range to the songs.
Pretty much the whole of the album is played along with a couple of newer songs and there’s no filler as they rattle through the set. There’s genuine warmth between the crowd and the band who are genuinely appreciative of the response they get. There’s always a danger with contemporary soul bands that it’s little more than sixties pastiche and borderline tribute but there’s no such worries tonight as the quality of the songs elevates them from the run of the mill.
Expected highlight of ‘SOB’ but ‘Look it here’ hits the marks. Special mention to the livewire trumpeter who didn’t stop moving and dancing while still playing the trumpet often one handed. A real cool dude. Also props to the organist. I am sucker for a Hammond and this guys rocked it and was a fine harmonist too.
A thoroughly great evening. Catch them before they get too big.