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Review of Night Beats at PJ’s Lager House – 4.11.19

Night Beats

by David Gimpel

The Night Beats came rolling into Detroit for a special evening in partnership with the CREEM Magazine’s 50th anniversary celebration. The party for CREEM started the previous night showing a documentary on the magazine’s history at The Fillmore as part of the Freep Film Festival. Not to mention all of this was sponsored by Third Man Records, it was all about Rock N Roll.

Currently, Night Beats are touring in support of their fourth record, Myth Of A Man. This record sees the founding member Danny Lee Blackwell not only with new bandmates, but with a new sound. For this record he teams up with Dan Auerbach (The Black Keys) and some outstanding session musicians who worked with Elvis and Aretha Franklin. The band is more in laid back R&B sound with some slick guitar grooves, in place of the psychedelic freak outs the band is known for.

The band played early favorites such as “They Came In Through The Window,” “As You Want,” “Outta Mind” and “H-Bomb.” They’re definitely influenced by the purveyor of psychedelic rock The 13th Floor Elevators and garage rock of the 60s, but that’s not all that defines them. They have an old school R&B mentality, which can be seen in the new cut “One Thing,” and the song “Sunday Morning.”

I absolutely loved their aesthetic. Looking like cowboys who were transported from 1964 but had to find clothes that would fit them in 2019. Danny wore a sweet dark blue blazer with a modern top hat made for train robbin’ in the old west. The guitar player had a more classic cowboy hat, but overall their whole look really made the songs come to life.

Set highlights included their cover of Bo Diddley’s “Hey Mamma, Keep Your Big Mouth Shut” when the entire crowd sang along during the breakdown. The main set closer “Puppet on A String” is a stone-cold garage rock classic. Night Beats came out to play “Egypt Berry” for their “encore.” It was a barn burner of a tune that sounded like it was made from a dream where the band met Chuck Berry in front of the pyramids of Egypt and decided to jam together.

If you are looking for a new band discover, and like your rock n roll groovy, with some splashes of psychedelia, give Night Beats a listen.

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