STREET SOUNDS: Some gritty riffs

Dean Gordon-Smith takes a listen to the latest from the Royal Southern Brotherhood

Their name isn’t bluster. It implies heritage and they’ve got the pedigree to back it up.  Names like Neville, Vaughan and Allman have graced the roster of the Royal Southern Brotherhood since its formation.

The supergroup thing was incidental – leader Cyril Neville’s idea was to find some kindred spirits to rock out with.  On their third album, Don’t Look Back, Neville and band (Tyrone Vaughn, Bart Walker, Charlie Wootton and Yonrico Scott) materialize a mix of funky rock and soul that’s deep in the groove. The new guitar duo of Vaughn and Walker throw out fiery lines and tasteful chops behind Neville’s soulman vocals.  Neville’s delivery is buoyant, taking inspiration from the potent team of Scott and Wootlon on drums and bass.

The performance is a high-energy kick of tough sounding tracks that reveal a formidable talent for ensemble playing and interconnection.  for the stage.

The band’s ability to mix jams with funky patterns and spitfire guitars gives them counter rhythms galore, and their no nonsense lyrics and gritty riffs offers  a deeply layered take on Dixie soul sounds.