It’s their first time over here for many years and they are promoting new album ‘Love in Wartime’ co-produced by the great Luther Dickinson and released here in a couple of weeks.Tonight they are joined by lead guitarist, drummer (apologies didn’t get their names) and Chris Merrill on bass who provide an understated rhythm to tonight’s show leaving JT and Alison front and centre with the latter switching between banjo, ukulele and clarinet throughout.
The two complement each other perfectly with JT’s gruff snarl contrasting with Alison’s range and soulful, gospel like quality. This is not to do JT a disservice and he is an able lead with his Elvis lip curl but it’s understated compared to Alison’s’ vocal instrument. They both have great stage presence and JT’s banter between songs is pithy and witty which is rare these days and this immediately turns up the love meter from the crowd a few notches.
From the first set the two combine perfectly for the stand out song ‘Remember Wild Horses’ and again a shout out to the band tonight who provide the glue to proceedings keeping the musical train on the track.
After a short break they’re back with Alison given a solo moment for the unrecorded song about their daughter ‘You are not alone’. It’s moving stuff, solo and unaccompanied before the band re-join for the remainder of the set.
It’s all over in a flash with just time for an acapella sing along with the crowd for the excellent title track off of their EP from last year ‘American Flowers’. It’s a great end to a perfect night of soulful Americana of the highest order.
My only gripe for the evening is charging £15 for the new CD which I think is a bit naughty.
‘Till the next time, keep on rockin’ y’all