Live review: Deer Tick at Broadcast, 18/01/14

_01A5786Tonight’s sell-out gig is literally buzzing with excitement as American five-piece Deer Tick take to the stage as best they can, drummer Dennis Ryan having been squeezed in at the back of the tiny platform.

With a brief “hey” from a croaky John McCauley the band launch into their most recent single, 2013’s ‘The Rock’, it’s melancholy folk-rock beginning quickly building into a slightly more buoyant, lyrically beautiful tune, McCauley’s voice having lost all of its earlier roughness.

From there on, Deer Tick only get better.

Despite McCauley’s apology that the band is essentially running on empty every member performs spectacularly, from the bluesy guitar in ‘Baltimore Blues No. 1’ to the 60s rock’n’roll channelled through ‘Let’s All Go To The Bar’, which gets every member of the crowd singing along.

The band are soon joined on stage by Vanessa Carlton, McCauley’s wife, who he duets with on ‘In Our Time’, a country-influenced number that despite not being as upbeat as some of their earlier songs is still a joy to listen to.

Other highlights of the set include the rock-heavy ‘Thyme’ and 2011 single ‘Miss K’, before the band return to play a brief but brilliant encore, including the unparalleled ‘Ashamed’, easily the most anticipated song of the evening.

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So popular are Deer Tick tonight that the crowd remain stuck in place, shouting and whistling for a second encore but unfortunately the band are done.

Deer Tick’s unique mixture of blues, country and rock’n’roll makes for a show that is energising, stimulating and occasionally poignantly beautiful.

Hopefully on their next visit to Glasgow the band will play a larger venue and more fans can experience the drive and vigour they all put into their live sets.

More photos

Words: Katherine Haig
Photos: Alexander Gibson

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