Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band close out the final night of this year’s SummerTyne Americana Festival at the Sage Gateshead.
The Big Damn Band are making their debut appearance at the festival but are no strangers to the North East of England having played here several times over the years. Most recently, they played a sold out show at the Cluny in Newcastle last summer.
The Indiana-based trio is currently touring in support of their critically acclaimed album, So Delicious. The band has witnessed great success with their latest offering. Tracks like “Hell Naw” (included in the set tonight) are receiving regular radio airplay in the US. Peyton comments that they almost didn’t include this number on the record, but it’s a good thing they did.
Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band are getting ready to release a new stripped back album entitled the Front Porch Sessions in November, and they choose to road test a couple of new tracks on the audience here tonight. The first of which is a cover of “When My Baby Left Me” by Furry Lewis, delivered by Reverend Peyton in a solo spot on his trusty resonator before the rest of the band return to the stage for their latest heartfelt love song “We All Deserve A Happy Ending.”
Despite being a trio, the band has a huge sound characterised by the fierce slide guitar of Peyton and the pounding rhythm section of Breezy on Washboard and Maxwell Senteney on drums. Collectively the band gels so well together, to produce an incredible country blues sound.
The group has a DIY approach to their setup; Senteney’s drum kit includes none other than an upside bucket. Peyton also informs us that he broke his guitar neck recently. He managed to fix it with coffee stirrers and super glue.
Peyton commands the stage. Once the audience is warmed up, he gets the crowd participation going particularly during “Clap Your Hands.” He encourages the audience to chug their beer, scream and stomp their feet, which resultingly shakes the Sage Gateshead to its very foundations.
Throughout the show, Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band draw upon their influences, which in turn highlights some of the finest blues artists the U.S. has ever produced. These include a cover of Charlie Patton’s 100-year-old song, “Mississippi Boweevil Blues,” delivered on a three-string cigar box guitar. They also close out their main set with their take on Willie Dixon’s “You Can’t Judge A Book By It’s Cover.”
Rapturous applauses spur on the band’s return to the stage, whereby they bring the festival to a close with the frantic “Two Bottles of Wine.” Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band was the perfect choice to end this year’s SummerTyne Americana Festival, they never disappoint, they have to be seen to be believed and the audience here at the Sage Gateshead tonight are most certainly believers.