Jared James Nichols + DeWolff + Doomsday Outlaw
Thursday 12th October 2023
Tufnell Park Dome, London
Doomsday Outlaw from Sheffield were an unknown quantity to me until the afternoon of the gig, but, after an hour of YouTube research, I was determined not to miss their opening set, which was scheduled to start at 7.15 pm. To my horror, I was nearly 50 yards from the venue’s door and in a stationary queue at the appointed hour!
It turned out that DeWolff had suffered amplifier problems during their soundcheck, but fortunately Doomsday Outlaw declined the opportunity to play to an empty room. Instead they agreed to drop one song from their setlist and to play for 25 minutes instead of half an hour, as things got underway at 7.35 pm.
They packed half a dozen bluesy rockers into their well received short set, with all bar one of them from their latest album ‘Damaged Goods’ (2023); the exception was the closer, which came from ‘Suffer More’ (2016). I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in looking forward to hearing this twin guitar five piece again (special mention for the wildest leather jacket I’ve seen in a good while: a turquoise & black leopard print sported by the bassist!).
DeWolff took to the stage at 8.20 pm and their all action 50 minute set may also have been slightly shorter than scheduled. Promoting their brand new double CD (or triple LP) ‘Live & Outta Sight 3’, the band’s entire set of five extended workouts was taken from that release.
Although charismatic guitarist Pablo van de Poel handles most of the vocals, his bandmates also pitch in to good effect; organist Robin Piso shared singing duties on the opening ‘Night Train’ (originally from ‘Love, Death & In Between’, 2023), while drummer Luka van de Poel (Pablo’s brother) indulged in some call and response vocals with the audience on ‘Treasure City Moonchild’ (originally from ‘Wolffpack’, 2020).
On ‘Will O’ The Wisp’, also from this year’s studio album, Pablo’s solo had shades of Peter Green about it, before he exercised his wah wah pedal on ‘Nothing’s Changing’. The latter, from ‘Tascam Tapes’ (2019) was given an extended treatment, with Piso conjuring some spacey and slightly sinister sounds from the organ, before he and Pablo indulged in some interplay which reminded me a little of their famous countrymen Focus.
During the closing ‘Rosita’ (also from ‘Love, Death & In Between’) Pablo went for a lengthy stroll among the audience, before emerging unscathed. To a loud cheer, he announced that the band will be back in London in March (at Omeara in London Bridge).
I hadn’t seen or heard headliner Jared James Nichols for a handful of years, since he played smaller rooms like the Black Heart in Camden and The Islington pub near Angel. Since then his Southern Blues/Rock sound has got rather heavier and he has developed a bodybuilder’s physique to match that sound.
Promoting his self-titled 2023 studio album, Jared’s setlist featured eight songs from that release and two others (‘Honey, Forgive Me’ and ‘Keep Your Light On, Mama’) from ‘Black Magic’ (2017). The crowd seemed to particularly enjoy the reference to Jessica (Allman Brothers Band) during ‘Shadow Dancer’.
Good as those songs were, it was the unrecorded (as far as I can tell) trio of songs which were as well received as any; ‘Throw Me To The Wolves’ and ‘Bad Roots’ featured guitar quotes from ‘Miss You’ (The Rolling Stones) and ‘Norwegian Wood’ (The Beatles) respectively, while the encore romp through ‘War Pigs’ (Black Sabbath) featured fine contributions from Jared, bassist Lewis Collins (a Bournemouth native now living in the USA) and drummer Ryan Rice.
Jared’s 75 minute set ran pretty close to the 11 pm curfew due to the late start, but it was encouraging to see all three bands doing good business at the merch table after the gig.
DO – In Too Deep; Turn Me Loose; If This Is The End; One More Sip;
Runaway; Bring You Pain.
DeW – Night Train; Treasure City Moonchild; Will O’ The Wisp; Nothing’s
JJN – Easy Come, Easy Go; My Delusion; Down The Drain; Hardwired;
Throw Me To The Wolves; Skin ‘n Bone; Bad Roots; Shadow Dancer;
Honey, Forgive Me; Good Time Girl; Keep Your Light On, Mama; Nails
In The Coffin; War Pigs.