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COLLINS & THE SLIM VICIOUS BOYS
Boom Boom Club, Sutton 11 July 2011
If you thought Nashville has never stretched beyond the gentlest
confines of alt-country, then think again. With rockers like Paramore,
Kings of Leon, Jack White and Dan Baird (Georgia Satellites) having all
moved there and with the amazing guitar picker Johnny Hiland trading his
country heritage for fiery rock on his new CD, there's clearly something
stirring on the footsteps of the Grand Ol Oprey.
And if there
is a discernible parallel rock & roll universe bubbling under in the old
'Music City' then it's surely epitomised by the kick ass rock & roll
band that is Stacie Collins & The Slim Vicious Boys.
It was Dan
Baird who saw enough raw potential to produce their 2007 album 'Lucky
Spot' and with current Jason & The Scorchers bass player Al Collins in
the ranks, and Scorchers guitarist Warner E. Hodges and Dan Baird both
contributing to her current album 'Sometime Ya Gotta', this is a band
with some pedigree.
But even a
premiere musical pedigree doesn't prepare you for the sheer joie de
vivre, let alone the one woman rock & roll explosion and on stage
charisma of the hell blowing harp cat (or harp blowing hell cat) that is
Playing to a
crowd who took a leap of faith in checking her out, she came, she saw
and she conquered with a set of roadhouse rocking intensity and a band
armed with searing licks and a muscular undertow.
Rarely can such a keen sense of anticipation have been transformed so
quickly into the kind of fist pumping fever pitch that Stacey managed to
generate after a just handful of songs.
But it's a
reaction easily explainable as Stacie and her Slim Vicious Boys launched
into the kind of rip roaring, kick ass live set that so many dream about
and all too few actually experience.
from her stage presence which immediately connected with the crowd,
Stacie re-drew the parameters of harp playing as she attacked her
instrument as if with her last breath and with a body language all of
she stalked the stage and crouched down to hold a wailing note, the next
minute she was bent over double as her cowboy hat hit the deck.
still, in the true traditions of rock & roll, she shimmied up to guitar
player Tom Daley and later humped her bass playing hubbie Al Collins as
she cajoled every last bit of effort from her band.
she pranced and wailed her way through a set of bristling vitality
crammed full of retro, riff driven rock with a rough hewn alt country
Tom Daley cranked things up with some sharp edged licks that recalled a
younger Keith Richard, backed by a seamless rhythm section versatile
enough to go up, down or sideways at the merest wave of Stacie's harp.
powered their way through a high octane set of roadhouse rock with an
occasional country inflection on her vocal, as they explored their own
impressive back catalogue with songs like 'Hey Mister' - one of the few
self penned efforts that referenced the country antecedents of their
musical home - the heartfelt stomp of 'Baby Sister' and the harp led
country tinged rock & roll of 'It Ain't Love', while 'Tied To Me' came
with a booming chorus.
found time to recondition Billy Boy Arnold's blues 'Ain't Got You', but
it was on the riff driven rockers like 'I Won't Do Ya Like That' that
the band started to stretch out and in the blink of an eye segued from
southern roots rock into the fire and brimstone rendition of 'Jumping
Jack Flash' via Stacie's stolen harp riff from War's 'Low Rider'. Stacie
shook her mane of hair, boogied her ass off and hit the floor as she
blew her harp like a hurricane, drenching the crescendo of the song in
harp mic feedback.
It was in that split second rock and roll moment that you realised the
crowd around had just gone ballistic and somewhere in the darkness of
the edge of town, in Sutton, a new star was born.