Jimbo and Ian fills the Tunnels with Roots of Music

Jimbo and Ian fills the Tunnels with Roots of MusicJimbo and Ian fills the Tunnels with Roots of Music

Jimbo and Ian fills the Tunnels with Roots of Music

 

Tonight The Tunnels in Bristol celebrated an evening with music that refused to be defined. It was all excellent and rooted in the experiences of folk, African, European, the Worker, the Poor and the Enslaved.  The colossus that is Ian Siegal and Jimbo Mathus hit town tonight on a tour spreading their approach to music, life and humour across Austria, Belgium, Germany, Holland, Slovenia and with eleven dates left to play.

Jimbo and Ian fills the Tunnels with Roots of Music
Words barely capture the vibe, passion and the distilled essence of Ian Siegal and Jimbo Mathus’ music; they have a deep empathy and the harmonization and flowing tonal textures send chills down your spine and connects deep in your music DNA.  Tonight opened in a traditional Ian Siegal solo gig format with the wonderful Silver Spurs from The Dust he fills the stage and then when the last note of guitar recedes and his spinning fingers still he then invites Jimbo to join him on stage and the party begins. Ian introduces the multi-talented Jimbo with a new fact that he played on the score for Finding Nemo.  The flow of conversation linked the music and wove the tradition of storytelling with roots music this was a pair of troubadours in action.  Yes, there was a set list but this was flexible as they discussed what to play next, they dipped into traditional music and songs they have written and recorded on their live album Wayward Sons, and back catalogue of Ian’s including Man & Guitar, and Picnic Sessions. It was at the recording of Picnic Sessions that this pair of musical reprobates met and the happy partnership for music lovers was formed.

Jimbo and Ian fills the Tunnels with Roots of MusicThe set list mixed gospel, Mary Don’t You Weep, Blues Charlie Patton’s, Pony Blues and Mississippi Hill Country of RL Burnside with Long Haired Doney,  Wilie Nelson Country with Crazy Soldier via Willie Nelson and Tex-Mex courtesy of the song that never has a happy ending Gallo del Ciello. We learnt about mules that they were the infertile progeny of a Horse and an Ass, Jesse James’ pistol in the possession of Jimbo’s Dad and Rosetta Patton the daughter of Charley who bought Jimbo up. His music is steeped in the traditions and folk memories of Mississippi. Ian has a passion, deep understanding for the feel of the blues in all its shades and textures and when in Mississipi recording his name Ian was difficult for the rest to get to grips with, so he got called Overseas. Yes, he is from overseas but his understanding of the music makes him a natural, hence the Talkin Overseas Pirate Blues. This was artistry the show was immense and the music rolled on as guitars changed and for some of the songs Jimbo added harp plus delicious mandolin so sweet you could taste it.  Tallahatchie, a Jimbo number with a fantastic mandolin lead break, bringing more cheers and whoops of delights from an audience that sat in and listened in delight at the power of these two on stage. Favorites were included into the set  I Am The Train, Casey Jones and Hard Times Come Again No More, weaving the storytelling, connecting with our emotions as quality folk/roots music of the people for the people should.Jimbo and Ian fills the Tunnels with Roots of Music

 

Tonight’s show was a tour-de-force entertaining, funny and the music sublime we were transported into a land where music ruled we were in harmony and the singing  that accompanied the duo spontaneously on Dirty Old Town an encore that left us wanting more. You can tonight they move on to The Convent in Stroud. Continue to support live music if you can’t get there the solution is watch it online via Netgig – link HERE

Checkout the rest of Ian Siegal & Jimbo Mathus tour dates HERE

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Chantel McGregor back at The Tunnels

Chantel McGregor-1933

Chantel McGregor back at The Tunnels
16th December 2015

Chantel McGregor back at The Tunnels in Bristol on her current tour promoting her sparkling guitar playing and her current album Lose Control. Chantel tonight, despite back pain was full of smiles and a shimmering determination to play loud, hard and with her twist of Gothic Southern Rock with a glimmer of blues.

 

Chantel McGregor-2146The set list was full of guitar twists and turns full on riffs and licks that delight the ear with a selection of firm favourites and new music that certainly got the Tunnels in a party mood. The tone was set from the off with Freefalling that got the phalanx of fans in the mood to partake in spangly rock from Chantel. The sound was definitely rockier overall and this does suit her guitar style and her vocals poured out above the guitar like a cooling waterfall, a wonderful combination.

 

Having heard and reviewed her latest album I was delighted to hear the tracks live they really work on a stage up close to a crowd that what to hear every note played and lyric sung.  Burn Your Anger was really impressive as was Southern Belle, Gothic Southern rock with a tinselly trail of the blues running through the whole number.  Tonight she hit Bristol with power chords that slur and grind out a melodic sound with her feminine vocals full of purity this is a combination that wins every time.

Tonight Colin Sutton on Bass rocked the rhythm section and held amusing conversations with Chantel, it was definitely a first for any conversation or gig to have Unicorns, Haggis and Otters in the same conversation. This had to be the warm up act for Chantel going progressive with the closing track of Lose Control, Walking On Land – what a land of imaginative guitar playing that Chantel took us too.  I believe in unicorns when the music is this good. This was an instrumental that added a new facet to the show, Chantel’s guitar playing is virtuoso and her style is distinctly hers as she blends and shapes her influences into her own guitar story.  The title track Lose Control is a winner once again Chantel controls the energy of the guitar bending the strings to play her tune.

The tempo and tone changed as Chantel took up the acoustic guitar and we heard Anesthetise transporting you into a different reality no-one would have been surprised if an unicorn stepped on the stage to keep her company as Colin and Andy had left the stage. This is a song driven by lyrics full of haunting tones delivered by her Taylor acoustic. Then Home also from Lose Control suits this format perfectly and closing this segment with Eternal Dream inspired by her hero Jeff Buckley.

 

Chantel McGregor-2062The rest of the band returned to the stage with the tempo going up to eleven and the electric guitar rules once again with Your Fever and Killing Time amongst the closing numbers. No wonder the encore, has had lots of airplay across the radio stations and especially Planet Rock as Take The Power is what Chantel does every time her fingers hits the six strings!

Anyone who hadn’t already purchased Lose Control was now hooked on this new sound that Chantel was playing with a new sense of maturity, control fizzed up with the effervescent energy that is Chantel McGregor.

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Aynsley Lister ~ live @ The Tunnels, Bristol

Aynsley Lister  - The Tunnels- August 2015_0155lAynsley Lister  - The Tunnels- August 2015_0105l

 

Aynsley Lister
@ The Tunnels, Bristol
Friday 14th August

 

Tonight underneath Temple Meads at The Tunnels in Bristol the atmosphere was full of electric anticipation as we waited for Aynsley and his band to lift the roof of the arches and the music to flow through our collective veins in the South-West. Aynsley’s fan base is loyal and growing reflecting the power of his live act; the sparkling studio and live albums and the award-winning skills of Aynsley’s rock-blues guitar playing.

Aynsley Lister  - The Tunnels- August 2015_0024lTonight the band was on fire and the line-up behind him was two changes from the norm for this one-off gig after a tour of Germany with the enigmatic Jools Grudgings on keys; bassist Christian Dezelu and completing the rhythm section regular Boneto “Bunny” Dryden on drums. There was a party feel and the band were going to entertain with a set list that took us on a mini-tour of past albums and his current studio sound on Home. The live sound is honed unsurprisingly with the non-stop touring around the UK and Europe; the music though always has a freshness as if you are hearing the music for the first time no wonder the crowds gathered to hear him play in Bristol once again.

Aynsley Lister  - The Tunnels- August 2015_0062lOpening with Big Sleep we know we are listening to a guitarist steeped in the blues with a rocking tone providing a dramatic hard edge to his power chords; the solo was entrancing pulling the crowds deep into his musical soul. If you haven’t heard his latest album Home you were treated to the title track and four more demonstrating the deep array of textures, tonal variations and the words that hold the melodies together, full of relevance for today’s audiences. Broke connects as the words unfold “The state we’re in, Hard to know, what we’re heading for….” we all could relate to the lyrics delivered with feeling. The first set left people wanting more as he finished with a bluesy number Sugar with Jools piano intro adding a sparkle to a great number a sweet taste of Aynsley’s music to close the first part of the gig. Whilst we all enjoyed a break and opportunity to catch up with fellow friends and fans including the dedicated Steve Pierce who is known to travel to Poland to hear the Lister magic and intoxicating guitar playing. Once again the music was strung out across the tunnels the notes finding their way into the nooks and crevices and melding with the fabric of this great gigging venue.

Aynsley Lister  - The Tunnels- August 2015_0019lThe second set started where we had musically left off guitar driven music of the highest quality, with vocals that match so that we have that perfect combination of strong songs sung while the guitar hits the sweet spot on your musical antennae. Hitting the right spot with another track from Home, Hyde 2612 gets the second set underway, then one of my favourites from Equilibrium, What’s It All About, we know what it is all about a night of live music with friend’s and guitars that sing from every string makes for a perfect night out. Tonight there was a sadness many had just read about the untimely death of Brian Burns, a dedicated lover of live music; whose all too early death on the way from a Dr Feelgood gig the night before was a raw hurt and Aynsley’s dedication of Free in his memory was appreciated by all those who knew Brian who loved his blues, and always at the front the heart and soul of many an outing.

Aynsley Lister  - The Tunnels- August 2015_0056lTonight there was no argument that Aynsley was playing at the top of his game with a fluidity of sound that was delivered by the whole band, you had to know this was only the second time they had played together every riff, melody line and inter-action between the instruments was flawless. We had classics from Freddie King with Tore Down, guitar solos and a duel between guitar and keys it was a draw with both hitting all the right notes. Another Aynsley classic Early Morning Dew was played drawing down memories of other Aynsley gigs and the pleasure they bring. Ending the night with a thundering delivery of Possession we wanted more as the last notes faded away and we did yes it had to be Purple Rain, this version of Prince’s classic number always delights the crowds, and tonight was no different.
Tonight they gained some new fans and ensured that we will be back to hear more of Aynsley’s magic next time he rolls into town.

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Ian Siegal @ The Tunnels, Bristol

Ian Siegal - The Tunnels - March 2015 -  5 - _0097l

 

Ian Siegal
The Tunnels, Bristol
26th March 2015

 

Ian Siegal - The Tunnels - March 2015 -  5 - _0030l

It is Thursday so it must be Bristol in a tour the has seen Ian Siegal and his current band on a tour that has seen him up and down venues in England and Scotland; the tour is drawing to and end and there is that ‘we are getting the end of the road’ fever in the delivery of the set tonight. Opening with tracks from his current album One Night In Amsterdam, the gig was off to a high-octane start with lots of witty sharp and at times tongue-lashing banter that was always delivered with Siegalist irony and a wicked gold glinting smile. The version of Brandy Balloon had a frenzy of funkyness with James Brown inspired guitar playing by Dusty Ciggaar. Ian Siegal - The Tunnels - March 2015 -  5 - _0050bwl Temporary is a superb track written by the Austrian Ripoff Raskolnikov, who like the character in Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment spins the words. We had an on fire performance of Tom Waits Jockey Full of Bourbon, a track full of clever lyrics that spin-off the Siegal silver tongue that is driven by the avant-garde Latin beat this so suits Ian’s current Pirate persona with the lines “16 men on a deadmans chest, And I’ve been drinking form a broken cup”.

Ian Siegal - The Tunnels - March 2015 -  5 - _0112lAs ever the set list changed tonight as we heard Ian’s version of Warren Zevon’s Carmelita done tonight with verve and style the arrangement suiting the drumming of Raphael Schwiddessen, and the solid delivery of bass from Danny Van’t Hoff giving the band a solid rhythm section that adds a deep tone and structure allowing Dusty and Ian the freedom to develop riffs and play off each other. It is though Ian’s powerful vocals that sets the delivery of music that bends twists and spits out a range of genres that sets this band out from the rest there is no doubt he is the leader of the pack. Tonight we saw Ian at his dirtiest and naughtiest attitude both on guitar and his vocals giving that extra layer of passion, as he shared with the audience his thoughts on British Society and politics and his despair for how people think. So adding The Revelator into the set suited the evening with the medley in the middle that includes Backdoor man that allows freedom of expression and then with a flick of his hand the band brings the chords of Revelator back in an inspired delivery. No set whether solo or with a band is compete without the amazing song Gallo Del Cielo, Tom Russell’s lyrics so suit the style of Ian and the band with Dusty on a Baritone guitar, loved by writers of theme music for Spaghetti Westerns and Duane Eddy gave the sound a real Tex Mex edge as described by Ian as one of his musical styles on an earlier interview with BBC Radio Bristol; tonight as ever it ended in tragedy all hope of returning home lost.

Ian Siegal - The Tunnels - March 2015 -  5 - _0008lAmongst these inspired re-workings of great songs were many of Ian’s including a new version of Early Grace, Falling On Down and Hard Pressed with some Prince thrown into the mix. Tonight we also heard a fantastic jazz infused instrumental from the band who are The Rhythm Chiefs and have been playing together for over ten years in the Netherlands. The tone that the guitarists got from the instruments just plugged straight into the amplifier with no pedals was amazing, especially Dusty Ciggaar; who has to be one of the best players on the planet today.

Ian we hope we keep seeing you in The U.K; solo, duo with a band the venues and everyone who has come to see you love your originality, anarchism and your polished skill vocally and on the guitar you make every song sound exceptional. Ian Siegal live should not be missed TOUR DATES

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