To say since 2015 Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown, commonly referred to as simply ‘The Shakedown’, have been on a rollercoaster ride of sorts would be an understatement.
Their EP ‘The Wayside’ was released in the back end of 2015 and has since seen the band land support tours with monumental bands in the rock genre; Rolling Stones, Tom Petty, AC/DC, Aerosmith, Guns N Roses to name a few.
Their current European tour entitled ‘Ramblin’ Bones’, named after the track taken from their self titled debut release, compromised of a mere 4 UK dates; Birmingham, Manchester, London & Wales.
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For the evening’s performance the band rolled into the Manchester’s Ruby Lounge, an intimate venue with a 350 person capacity.
Around 9pm the band graced the stage wasting no time with two cuts from the latest release seemingly blurring ‘Backfire’ and ‘Heartland’; the latter being the new single.
Given their touring credentials and subsequent exposure it was dumbfounding to see so few in attendance, this didn’t seem to matter or hinder as the band unleashed into a blistering performance of ‘House Is On Fire’.
‘Downtown Tonight’ is the first instance where the band manifest their jam qualities and influences into their set; Tyler leading the way with an improvised extended solo, basking in the blues ambience of the song.
The Shakedown show a sincere appreciation for the support on a cold Monday evening and mention their last visit to Manchester with The Cadillac Three back in November stating “We said we’d be back with a new album and we did”
‘The Wayside’, certainly one of the highlights of the entire performance for a multitude of reasons; the band really are in their element, his particular soulful blues number excels in the intimate live setting. The backing vocals from bassist Noah and guitarist Graham are the impeccable compliment to Tyler’s emotive lead.
It’s apparent how tight the band really are, not just within the musical confines but genuine friendships too with some casual horseplay; drummer Caleb spitting water at Tyler from across the stage.
As mentioned the marriage and infusion of styles means at times the momentum takes a minor dip yet is soon brought back up to speed with tracks such as the blues groove ladened ‘Don’t Mind The Blood’, ‘Criminal Immagination’ & ‘Weak & Weepin’.
Elsewhere ‘Mojo Workin’ & Lipstick Wonder Woman’ lay the foundations for the band to transition into a jam ensemble with Caleb dismantling his drum kit and taking the tom-tom to the forefront of the stage receiving a rousing response from the audience. A conglomeration of solos soon ensued by Caleb, Tyler and Graham, exhibiting the undeniable tight chemistry the band possesses, naturally feeding off one another’s enthusiasm and musicianship.
The Shakedown exited the stage briefly to soon return and break into an impressive and excitable rendition of Tom Petty’s You Wreck Me’; unfortunately and surprisingly the response was warm at best.
The band followed proceedings with a jam medley and the inevitable climax and pinnacle track of the set, the alluringly crafted Ramblin’ Bones’. Tyler took the stage centre, accompanied by only his acoustic, to deliver an awe inspiring performance of the track, receiving admirable support from the audience with many singing alongside with every word.
“We’ll be back next year Manchester if you’ll come back”, the final words that filled the venue and marked the culmination of the impassioned performance.
House Is On Fire
Don’t Mind The Blood
Lipstick Wonder Woman
Weak N Weepin’
You Wreck Me (Tom Petty cover)