J. Roddy Walston & The Business w/ Reignwolf & The Wans
Exit/In, Nashville, TN
October 27, 2013
Photos by Jake Giles Netter
We’re huge fans of J. Roddy Walston & The Business here at No Country. After first stumbling (literally) upon them at a tiny off the beaten path stage at Bonnaroo, we instantly made a mental note to catch this rolling party anytime we could. We already knew that we were going to be covering this at Exit/In, but the announcement of a Salvador Dali Parton set to open up the night had us there early. This might have been a god send in the fact that we also were introduced to Reignwolf, and those guys are now scribbled right next to J. Roddy’s name on that same mental “do not miss” post it note.
We have a run down of the full night’s events below, and there are a bunch more photos from Jake Giles Netter to wake you back up after the nap-inducing read.
The night got started with The Wans. This is a pretty tough slot for the loud ass Nashville rockers, but the three piece poured their heart into that performance. It was one of the best that we have seen out of them, and expect there will be quite a few more in the near future.
In the interlude between The Wans and J. Roddy was a new band for us, Reignwolf. We’ve seen J. Roddy enough times that we probably could have written this review without even sticking around, but I guess it is the curiosity to see someone new that got us writing these little articles in the first place. Sometimes, you find the best things in life come when you aren’t even looking for them. I’m not even going to paint the picture of how this one got started, because there is a video that does better than words will ever do to let you feel the jaw-dropping power of front man (and sometimes one man band) Jordan Cook.
Did you watch that? No? I know you are busy, and that thing is a couple of minutes long, but that video up there is sheer bad ass. Go ahead, I’ll wait. After this solo intro, Cook was joined by his brother (with a six stringed bass) and a drummer for most of the rest of the set, but the experience did not slow down… except when he picked up an electric mandolin and tried to play some slower tracks to catch his breath. Of course, this didn’t last long either. When the mandolin didn’t scream the way he wanted, Cook beat the poor little instrument into submission, and it started crying just like that guitar did. Reignwolf is the real deal people. The next time you get a chance, do. not. miss. this. show.
The crowd was buzzing after the Reignwolf set as J. Roddy’s upright piano was wheeled onto the stage. Walston doesn’t care for the convenience of keyboards, because he is “a pianist, not a keyboardist.” “I can kind of just beat on it and spit at it and walk around on it; if you did that to a regular keyboard it would just fall apart.” You can see that in the songwriting of J Roddy & The Business too. They bring an aggressive form of dirty bar rock n’ roll grit perhaps like Jerry Lee Lewis’ “Great Balls Of Fire,” but, if they had a version of that classic, it would be banned for steroid use. Seeing J. Roddy Walston & The Business is an in your face, chug your beer, throw your fist up, and scream as loud as you can with an ear to ear smile on your face party. It’s what rock n’ roll was before Pitchfork came into the world. We’ve babbled plenty about this. These guys make it to town at least once a year. If you don’t trust us enough to check them out on their next tour, you probably aren’t reading this anymore anyway.
Shout out to Jake Giles Netter for the killer photos below.