Vintage Trouble at Sage Gateshead
13 Dec 2011
I can’t remember the last time I saw a band twice in 6 months, if indeed ever but the chance to see Vintage Trouble play the three storey Hall 2 at Sage Gateshead was far too good an opportunity to miss.
Pre-show the foyer was an interesting mix of the grey haired Newcastle Musical Cognoscenti and a staggering amount of ‘young people’ including many teenagers; who it appeared had followed them around the Northern circuit all year.
As a photographer I was jammed into a space beside the stage that was only half my size for the first three songs; but the discomfort was well worth it. As the house lights exploded the roar from the packed crowd was deafening as the band blasted out Welcome to the Party with the swaggering confidence of men on the verge of greatness.
It’s eye-popping to be so close to singer Ty Taylor as he dances, shimmy’s and struts like a dervish and still manages to convey every emotion imaginable while never missing a note.
To date Vintage Trouble have only recorded one album and every track got an airing tonight, with Papa Was a Bluesman and Nancy Lee both growing in stature as the year has gone by.
After the obligatory ‘first three songs’ at the front with my camera I retired to my seat up on the third balcony; which turned out to be the perfect vantage point to watch the band and audience.
In the 21st Century it’s difficult to describe what Vintage Trouble look and sound like; but I can only imagine that this is what the old Stax Revues of the early 1960’s must have been like as they play at 100mph for two solid hours and the music is a heady mixture of Blues, Soul, R&B and good old fashioned Rock and Roll.
The drummer, guitarist and bass all have the ‘right chops’ as they say and certainly produce a boilerhouse effect for singer and talisman Ty Taylor who has to be seen on stage to be believed; as not since those early days of Stax and Motown has the industry produced such a charismatic singer.
If James Brown begat Wilson Pickett who begat Marvin Gaye he in turn has begat Ty Taylor! Cee Lo Green and Aloe Black had better be looking over their shoulders as Vintage Trouble has an extra spicy sizzle to their soulful beats.
There songs are damn good; in fact Jezzabella and You Better Believe It are damn good as you can actually sing and dance to them; but both men and women can’t take their eyes off Taylor who has taken influences from all three singers I’ve named and moulded them into something so new there might not be a name for it yet.
This guy can croon like Marvin at his best on songs like Gracefully and a new song called 24-7-365 Satisfaction but he can also be just as suggestive with that mic stand as JB ever was! Even I got a ‘funny feeling’ a couple of times.
Plus the band can touch on politics when necessary without getting too deeply involved; as they show with the slight at newspapers – Not Alright By Me which had the crowd roaring out the chorus time after time.
Nalle Colt on guitar, Rick Dill on bass and Richard Danielson on pounding drums provide the perfect cover for Taylor to be the consummate showman and my tip to be a Star in 2012.