The Examiner Reviews DNC at The Tabernacle 12/26/10

Drivin N Cryin & friends rock the Tabernacle on a cold Sunday night

by Chris Martin for The Examiner

There are few things in this world you can count on, but aDrivin N Cryin (DNC) show during the holidays is definitely one of them. Whether it be Thanksgiving orChristmas DNC brings the heat and puts on a great rock show during the holiday season, Sunday, December 26that the Tabernacle was no exception. Kevn Kinney,Tim NielsenMac Carter and Dave V. Johnson were in tune, in sync ready to rock, and they did just that.

From the first note of “Honeysuckle Blue” to the last howl of “Straight To Hell” Sunday night’s show was one of the loudest, ass kicking, ear drum busting rock shows I have seen out of DNC in the 20+ years I have seen them performing. They put the hammer down and didn’t let up until the night was over. I knew it was going to be a special show when during the opening “Honeysuckle Blue” they broke into Cheap Trick's “Hello There”. DNC tore through the classics, “To Build A Fire”, “Fly Me Courageous” (FMC), “Scarred But Smarter”, “Around The Block Again”and “Can’t Promise You The World” mixed in an incredible version of “Underground Umbrella” with some sweet jamming and guitar solos, and delivered big time with“Let’s Go Dancing”. The new stuff from Great American Bubble Factory sounded great, “Detroit City” with the video playing in the background rocked and“Preapproved, Predenied” sounds great live. Also in the mix were covers of Foghat’s “I Just Want To Make Love To You”, which was an all out jam session, Deep Purple’s“Smoke On The Water” mixed into FMC and a version of the Drive-By Truckers (DBT) “Never Gonna Change” that they need to cover for an album, it was incredible.

DNC were joined by a cast of musical guests throughout the night. Buren Fowler brought his power guitar to the mix about half way through the night, showing he still has what it takes. Georgia legend Eddie Kirkland was brought out on stage, the 87 year old blues man tore it up on “Georgia Peach”, laying down some sweet guitar licks before picking up the harmonica and jamming with the band. (He also got to autograph a woman’s boob later, I saw it with my own eyes, wish I hadn’t though) Col. Bruce Hampton hit the stage, showing his guitar prowess in addition to singing a tune. Jason Isbell came out and lent his vocals and guitar playing to a few tunes, then Abby Owens and Angie Aparo joimed in on the all in final jam of “Straight To Hell”. Man what a show.

In addition to DNC, the two opening bands kicked ass also. Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit ripped through their set, jamming tunes from their two albums, a couple ofDBT tunes and some new stuff. Their set was the perfect lead into DNC. While Jason’s songs are incredibly written and his haunting southern vocals bring the words to life, I had no idea he was such a good guitar player.

To kick off the night, Sons of Bill set the mood. Their set was short and sweet but it kicked ass. They treated the crowd to tunes from their two albums, which you should definitely check out. James Wilson’s vocals were a perfect match for the Tabernacle’s acoustics and Sam Wilson is one hell of a guitar player. With Abe Wilson on keyboard and a powerful rhythm section consisting of the barefooted Seth Green (bass) and Todd Wellons(drums) these guys from Virginia rock.

When all was said and done it was a perfect night of music. The house was packed for DNC, and those who were not there early enough to catch Sons of Bill and Jason Isbell really missed out on some good music, but the ones who were there, they got into it and know what I am talking about. Finally, I would like to get one thing off my chest, to the people out there who go to rock shows to socialize, just stay home. The masses are there to enjoy the tunes, not listen to your drunk ass jabber all night or move around from spot to spot to talk to everyone. Enough said. Other than that, great effin’ night of music and not even the frigid cold or jabbering drunks could have ruined that.

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