By Chyrisse Tabone, Rock At Night Tampa and Vlad, Rock At Night Detroit
Venue: The Shelter, Detroit-The Temperance Movement, Tyler Bryant & the Shakedown, and Thomas Wynn and the Believers–Carry Me On Down the Road Tour-July 7, 2019
Modern-day Detroit is a tale of two cities, each oblivious to one another.
One is characterized by a downtown/midtown area of young office professionals, posing hipsters, and those who see the world only through the narrow lens of their mobile.
The other is a place of gritty streetscapes and withering neighborhoods, punctuated by howling steam tunnels and the ghosts of factories past. It’s a place of the working class and a culture that traditionally reflects and embraces its hard-scrabble roots.
One of these lives by blues and rock ‘n roll. It’s given the world a long string of blues and rock acts known the world over—both black and “White.” It knows who’s John Lee Hooker and might even know that he revolutionized post-war blues as a factory worker in the city in the 1940s.
The other is wondering what to do with those Iron Maiden tees in their closet that are suddenly passé.
Which do you think is which?
In the dark recesses of Saint Andrews Hall on Sunday night, a trio of young acts from places as disparate as Scotland, Paris (Texas), and the swamp kingdom of Orlando, Florida, reminded Detroit that its blues/rock contributions to the world haven’t been forgotten.
And the roomful of people in attendance proudly wearing badges of their working class loudly approved.
Opening the evening’s proceedings, Floridians Thomas Wynn and the Believers put on a display of raw—yet not rough—Southern rock and soul.
Turning up the wattage for the evening was noted Texan blues prodigy—and Rock at Night favorite—Tyler Bryant with his band the Shakedown. Fresh off the release of the “Truth and Lies” album, the quartet delivered a energetic, high-volume take on the blues and rock craved by ardent Detroit rock audiences. (Once upon a time, they would have played Cobo Arena.) A highlight of their set was the song “Ride,” enthusiastically acknowledged by the middle agers in the crowd who have seen the real deal. It’s a testament to Bryant’s songwriting and vocals that many in the audience knew enough to sing along. A touching moment was the tender “Out There.”
It’s been observed that The Temperance Movement, the Scottish outfit that provided the culmination to the evening’s proceedings, is a blend of a kinetic front man who sings, feels, and moves to the music and a relentless, confident backing group. On more than a few occasions after the show, Rock at Night heard satisfied punters remark how evocative this group was of classic-era The Faces. Lead man Phil Campbell does remind us of a younger Rod in ways. And Ronnie Laine would nod approvingly of the band’s sonic swagger.
This troika of acts sweated and oozed the blues this evening in the Motor City, yet were deeply generous with their audience during and following the show (happily signing albums and engaging with fans old and new). They delivered arena-worthy performances to an intimate and grateful audience of devotees, and, judging from their reception, their honesty and flair are bound to earn them a wider fan base on this side of the pond.
SET LIST-The Temperance Movement
Caught In The Middle, Three Bulleits, The Way It Was and the Way It Is Now, Only Friend, Another Spiral, Pride, Ain’t No Telling, Battle Lines, Midnight Black, Smouldering, Take It Back, A Deeper Cut, Built-In Forgetter
SET LIST-Tyler Bryant & the Shakedown