September 24, 2014 by Jay Minkin
I was going to lead off with the full blown Americana Music Association travel log, but there is some breaking news out of Nashville that supersedes today’s top stories. The AMA showcases are a stumble of luck at times and Friday night was a roll of the dice that came up winners. Of the ten clubs hosting forty-eight different musical acts, the pick was based around seeing Jamestown Revival at The Mercy Lounge. My partner in crime Dale Elwell and I were all in to see Joe Purdy, Black Prairie, and Green River Ordinance who were also on the bill of performers starting at 8:00 PM. The last band to perform was a relatively new group that neither of us had heard, but Dale recommended based on reviews that pegged the group with such luminaries as The Allman Brothers and Tedeschi Trucks. What we were in for was one of the highlights of the five night extravaganza of music.
Going on at midnight as the final act, The Bros. Landreth made the whole house take notice of what was happening on stage by opening with a funky southern flavored cover version of “Let ‘Em In” from the 1976 release Wings at the Speed of Sound. The Canadian band which hails from Winnipeg, Manitoba ran through a selection of songs from their debut album Let It Lie that’s set for a January 27th American release on Slate Creek Records. The band begins with two brothers, David Landreth (bass) and Joey Landreth (slide guitar, vocals) who grew up being carted around to their Father’s club and bar gigs since babies. A nice family record collection schooled the youngsters on folks like Bonnie Raitt, Little Feat, John Hiatt, and Lyle Lovett. As they got older, both ended up going their separate ways touring in bands as sidemen until one day Dave and Joey started singing together just for fun. There was magic in the air as their voices and harmonies meshed to draw the only conclusion that this pairing is the road to forge their musical careers. They first added Ryan “Rhino” Voth as a drummer who holds the steady beat and groove which makes The Bros. Landreth sound really phenomenal. Giving the band a little bit of everything on the record with harmonies and lush B3 organ undertones is Alex Campbell, who no longer is touring with the band. Guitarist Ariel Posen, who has been playing with the group for a while, now adds additional punch and harmonies to round out the current tight line-up.
Engineered by Donnie Benedictson at Unity Gain Studios in Roseisle, MB and produced by Murray Pulver, the album’s eleven tracks are bright and beautiful like a sunny outdoor party album. Tracks heard from the band’s showcase included a nice mainstream radio friendly number called “Tappin’ on the Glass” and the toe-tapping “Made Up Mind”. Next they ripped and wailed through a fuzzy gritty blues rocker called “I Am The Fool” that led into the classic 1973 Paul McCartney and Wings cover “Let Me Roll It” and then followed that up with a funky rocker called “Runaway Train” that Raitt might wish to cover herself. The tempo slowed down a bit with the title track and a nice slow dance number called “Nothing”. The band threw in a song not on the album titled “Jesus on the Mainland” which was cultivated from a timeline moment when Joey toured with a gospel singer who used to walk around strumming the Gsus Chord and saying “loves you”. The set closed out with “Our Love” which is the first song on the record. The opening track sets the table for the rest of an album, and this song hooks the listener early with Joey’s soft deep Allmanesque vocals and electric slide guitars shredding through the bridge and closing notes.
The Bros. Landreth hit the road from New York to Los Angeles while crossing the Canadian border now through December. Look them up and circle the date on your calendar if they play anywhere near your hometown. One early stops is Saturday, September 27th at The Beachland Tavern in Cleveland, so I better giddy-up on home. Reporting live from Nashville … this is Minkin’s Music … late.