REVIEW: The Dead South, The Wedgewood Rooms, Southsea

The Dead South at The Wedgewood Rooms in April 2018. Picture: Paul Windsor
The Dead South at The Wedgewood Rooms in April 2018. Picture: Paul Windsor
A previous Last Night of the Proms at Waterlooville Music Festival

Waterlooville Music Festival set to return this weekend

Over the last couple of years Ken Brown's Square Roots Promotions has developed a loyal following putting on folk/Americana shows, mostly at The Square Tower.

Canadian band The Dead South were originally booked for said tower but that quickly sold out and it was decided to move to a larger venue – which also sold out.

It was a night of big hats and big beards with vocalists Nate Hills and Scott Pringle take centre stage, swapping banjos, guitars and lead vocals throughout the night, reminiscent of Springsteen's Seeger Sessions. Cellist Danny Kenyon wears his instrument in an unusual mariachi style, playing partly like a double bass and sometimes in a more traditional way. But star of the show for me is banjo player Eliza Mary Doyle who provides a glamorous edge to proceedings with delicate picking and a devilish bass-drum kick when the pace picks up.

It was another extraordinary night at the Wedgewood Rooms, 400 fans for an alt-country folk band from rural Saskachewan, hollering, footstomping, and creating an almighty noise – where did they all come from ? 

On this performance The Dead South are truly alive.

PAUL WINDSOR