Tonight the focus of The Louisiana in Bristol was Husky Tones and the launch of their new album I don’t give a damn anymore. Before we hear old favourites, hopefully, and the new numbers live we will hear Larkham and Hall. Tonight is the duel of duos and the cowmanship of friendship through the power of live music.
As we left the hot bar we were greeted with a cool upstairs as we waited for the opening act, the air con was welcomed by everyone. Larkham and Hall entertained with their own interpretation of country fuelled Americana. This acoustic duo has real appeal, Elliot Hall is tall and his ambling around the stage with an acoustic guitar and deep vocals contrasted with the diminutive, smiling upbeat vocal dynamo that is Sarah Larkham. The first of the two married duos certainly lifted the mood with songs that reached into their enormous locker of songs, Elliott has written over 2000 and some from the current album, songs of hurt and healing. The pair took us on a journey with laughter and tears with Sarah’s singing full of the emotive soul a true songbird that conquers Americana.
Then it was time for the main act, the celebration of a new E.P. I Don’t Give A Damn Anymore from Husky Tones. Victoria is now front of the stage and standing to play the beating heart of the Husky Tones sound. With Chris once again delivering melodic guitar and some juicy slide from a guitar borrowed from good friend Elliot Hall. Each time you see the Husky tones, they get ‘punkier’ melodically raucous tonight Victoria is full of sassy confidence tonight the lady in red. Yes, Red PVC on a hot night at least there was the Air Con. Whilst Chris is Mr Cool playing a sound that adds another tonal layer that is both sweet and dirty complimenting the drums.
The set opened with Walter Cull, the ne’er-do-well in Victoria’s Family Tree, from the EP we all wanted to hear live. The tones and energy lift the audience as Victoria beams a warm smile from across her drum kit. This is live music with energy and attitude. We dip back to their 2017 album Who Do I Turn To Now? for Momentum, the rough rhythms and political lyrics make this a great live track. Two songs in and I can confirm that standing whilst playing the drums adds energy to the duo and adds dynamism to the show. Tonight, was not just about the album, a favourite cover given the Husky treatment is Portishead’s Glory Box. Then unexpectedly not back to the EP, BUT a totally new song that will be on the next… Tonight we heard the newest of new Husky Tone numbers with All To Better My Ways, what a standout number that showcased some wonderful slide work courtesy of Chris.
The new EP dips into deep sadness, melancholy and loneliness reflected in the title track as you shake yourself down and get up and face the world again. As Victoria said, be proud, be bold and we are all wonderful. Husky Tones deliver every time music that is an edgy, angry protest sound – they do not give a damn anymore they play how they want the music they create to be heard as they close with What’s the time, John Bull. There was one number left in the tank before we all caught up after the show and it had to be that party number sexy and audacious from their 2017 album, as we heard These Hips Were Made For You. The perfect closing number from a set that celebrated the sound they want us to hear.