Charleston got a good taste of Tennessee-and-Louisiana-bred rock this past Saturday when The Delta Saints played Charleston’s Pour House with The Dirty Guv’nahs. The Delta Saints made the night with their gritty, soulful southern rock vibes and beyond infectious energy.
Throughout the night they played songs mostly from their upcoming album Death Letter Jubilee, which is to be released in the early weeks of 2013. Among the standouts were the title track from the forthcoming album, “Sing to Me,” “A Bird Called Angola” from their EP of the same name, “Momma” from Pray On E.P., and “Liar” which is available for free download on the band’s website. If you want to be introduced to your new favorite band, I strongly encourage you to take advantage of the band’s generosity.
There are so many reasons why this show was one of the best I’ve seen in Charleston in months. It may have been the melodic snarl that makes lead singer Ben’s voice so pleasing to the ear, or maybe it was the audience’s dedication during the call and response in the chorus of “Momma,” or all the booty-shaking during “Boogie.” It was refreshing to hear all of the instruments individually and be able to appreciate what they each contribute to the overall sound rather than only being able to hear overused chord progressions and cymbal crashes, which is sadly all too common with many bands today. I appreciate a good bass line, and bass player David delivered that along with some very impressive dreadlock-flinging. The smile on drummer Ben’s face all night long was hard to ignore and made the beats all the more sweet. But after considering every positive of the show, in all likelihood what pushed the Delta Saints’ set from amazing to mind-blowing was their blues-ified cover of the 2006 Gnarls Barkley classic, “Crazy.” We all know it. We all love it. During the jam break in the middle of the song, guitarist Dylan and harmonica player Stephen had their shining moments, nearly burning the stage down with the heat blazing from their instruments and the moves they were slinging at the audience.
Within the first thirty seconds of the Delta Saints’ set, I knew that a beautiful new music obsession was in bloom. While their recorded stuff is excellent, it does no justice whatsoever to the experience of seeing them perform live. Listening to “A Bird Called Angola” on my computer is great, but I’d much rather watch these guys on stage swaying with their instruments and stomping their bare feet. Beyond the performance, it’s great to see a band so connected to their roots, gaining momentum in the music scene not by penning tunes made to sell but rather making music that captures their soul and experience. Check them out if they come ’round your neck of the woods. Thank me later.