The Delta Saints are making a name for themselves among the alternative music industry, and for good reason, too. Monte Vista, their latest release, is a distinctive blend of alternative rock, blues, and a little bit of everything else.
Delta Saints Concert Review
Atlanta’s Blackberry Smoke are in the early stages of a national tour which was kicked off this weekend in Florida. Fans of the band are in for a treat, as the country/Southern rockers have brought along the very talented Delta Saints as their opener.
We had a chance to catch the quintet at their show last night at Orlando’s House Of Blues and left quite impressed. After watching their forty-five minute set, I think their unique and diverse blend of rock music is best described as dirty, slinky bayou rock that’s good for the soul. The Delta Saints are different for sure. They do things their own way and are an absolutely refreshing act for rock ‘n roll fans.
Ben Ringel’s vocals are distinctive and catchy, but the band truly revolves around the musical talent of all five band members. Ringel plays a National Dobro and traded off lead guitar with Dylan Fitch throughout the forty-five minutes set. Because of the two talented guitarists, they at times sounded like a guitar powered band, but in reality, they are a truly balanced act.
David Supica on bass and drummer Ben Azzi powered the performance from the opening of “Liar” through the final notes of “Jericho.” Supica and Fitch were flying around the stage and seemed to be having a blast playing to the packed HOB house.
However, I was most impressed by the contributions of Willy Burns on keyboard. His keyboards were more prominent than in any other artist I’ve heard over the past few years and are clearly an integral part of the band and their distinctive sound. His playing stood out on “Drink It Slow,” where the extended jam he shared with Azzi was my highlight of the show.
On this, their first Orlando visit, the band clearly impressed the crowd, and had them actively engaged, particularly during “Death Letter Jubileee,” the title track off of their strong 2013 release (see our review here and check it out below the article), and their most engaging offering this night. Other highlights included “Devil’s Creek,” a rollicking song about a hangover, “Cigarette,” a fun two-step boogie, and “Steppin'” which highlighted both Ringel’s powerful vocals and excellent guitar work.
They closed the set powerfully, with a crowd-pleasing mash-up of their excellent “Jericho” interspersed with a few highly interactive verses of The Beatles classic, “Hey Jude.” They thanked the crowd and left the stage with numerous new converts.
I had a chance to talk to several of the band members after the show and they seemed truly humble and happy to be travelling the country with Blackberry Smoke and the opportunity to play in front of so many potential new fans. They’re a talented crew with a great attitude, and I look forward to watching them progress as artists.
From the opening notes of the searing rocker “Liar,” you’ll be captivated by this bluesy rock quintet out of Nashville. They call themselves The Delta Saints – the “Delta” component is apparent throughout the album, but listening to the lyrics you’ll quickly realize they’re not quite “Saints.” They refer to their fans as Sinners and Saints; that definitely seems more appropriate.
These guys offer up a unique blend best described as Southern Rock on this, their debut full-length offering. It’s a diverse album, parts Bayou Blues, Chicago Soul and New Orleans Funk. It’s a nice mix and well worth a listen. The band has captured the essence of Mississippi roots rock in its many different forms throughout the thirteen tracks of Death Letter Jubilee. It’s a creative, fresh rock album that just oozes cool rock swagger.
The talented group evokes memories of numerous Southern Rockers, but the comparison I am drawn the most to is a more modern Little Feat. If you were a fan of Jeff Beck’s 80’s super-group Box of Frogs, and their distinctive guitar work, you’ll definitely enjoy these guys, too.
Songs like “Sing To Me,” and “Death Letter Jubilee” are swampy rockers that would feel just perfect listening to them while kicking back on the porch of a bayou shack sipping your favorite beverage from a mason jar. Ben Ringel’s vocals are gritty and passionate and the band offers plenty of dobro and harmonica giving them a unique down home feel. “Devil’s Creek” is of the same vein and is a rocking Cajun jam.
My favorite track is the slinky “From the Dirt” which is just a cool groove, and also features dynamic vocals. The aforementioned “Liar” which kicks off the album is driven by a fantastic bass line and is another very strong offering.
It’s a diverse album, but it’s all good old fashioned rock. You’ll get the soulful feel of “Chicago” and then travel South to New Orleans for “Nola” and the easy New Orleans swagger of “Boogie.”
It’s a good album and a nice way to start the year for rock music fans.
The album goes on sale today, Tuesday, January 15th. Check it out below on iTunes.