Vintage Trouble @ Acaemy 2

Vintage Trouble @ Acaemy 2

Vintage Trouble, Academy 2, Manchester, UK, 1/4/15  

It’s been four years since Classic Rock released copies of Vintage Trouble’s The Bomb Shelter Sessions album sampler with an issue of the magazine. Hailed as, amongst many superlatives hurled their way like roses at an opera singer, the saviours of soul-laced blues rock, their momentum has never slowed down since. Never once have they relinquished the hysteria that bustles around them, such is the power of integrity of the music they create.

The band is the real deal and one look around tonight’s crowd in a rammed Academy 2 will tell you that. Spilling across a plethora of different personal and social backgrounds, the spectrum of punters here is as broad as they come. We’ve all fallen victim to the band’s irresistible charm like dominoes and now, all come together to witness an ostensibly sweaty set.

Ty Taylor’s honey dripped vocals lead the way through Hard Times, executed with a hip-shaking sass that turns back the clock to the 1950s. Throughout Taylor keeps the audience in his sweaty palms, yet, despite throwing himself all over the stage, into the crowd and beyond, his dominance of the room never looks anything but effortless.

The call and response of saucy number Pelvis Pusher keeps things rolling along with a contagious energy, before slowing to take a breather with the pained and impassioned Another Man’s Words.  Every turn the band make, the audience are there to follow, the peaks and troughs of their dynamics and liveliness only adding to the set’s effectiveness. The way the crowd were silenced by Taylor’s sweet vocal hooks and Nalle Colt’s velvet guitar playing is testament to just how compelling they are on stage.

 

The upbeat flit of Total Strangers, complete with a refrain we’ll later hear echoed on the damp Manchester streets outside as the venue slowly empties is a complete success. The room bounces, hands grasp towards the ceiling and the whole vibe of the place verges on gospel worship. When Blues Hand Me Down wriggles out of the speakers, it’s a surprise the roof stays intact.

But what’s perhaps more intriguing here is how their performance is bang on the money without having to crank up the volume and vigour; it’s tactile and precise without an overboard need to lash at your jugular. It’s much better this way too, it’s more understated yet equally as convincing. Then again, there’s nothing understated about Taylor, drenched in sweat, ending the show stood on the sound desk at the back of the room, every neck craning backwards, every pair of eyes fixed upon him.

As you watch it all unfold, you can’t help but feel you’re witnessing a special band. It’s been four years since Classic Rock Magazine introduced the band to so many of us and with a glittered path laid out in front of them, there’s just no telling how far they can go from here.

Words: Phil Weller | Photos: Anthony Firmin 

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