The Cadillac Three and Brothers Osborne brought their country cool to the UK this month. HRH Mag checked out the rising stars of a red hot scene.

 

The thumping, pumping rhythm of It Ain’t My Fault must have been shaking the walls of The Cadillac Three’s compact dressing room as their handpicked support wrapped up a revelatory set in some style.

Brothers Osborne might have felt they were doing their pals a favour by whipping up a foot-stomping crowd into a country-fuelled frenzy but this was the last show any band would want to follow.

Played in front of a full house – and with at least 50% of those present singing along to every word – this felt like the main event. Riding high on the back of double CMA success (the band scooped Vocal Duo for the second year running earlier this month), Brothers Osborne never looked likely to play second fiddle to The Cadillac Three. And they didn’t.

But on reflection a night rich in decadent celebration probably finished as a dead heat. If Brothers Osborne threw down the gauntlet then The Cadillac Three picked it up, ran with it and proved their headline status was no fluke. With a slew of UK club tours under their belt, the multi-talented trio have paid their dues – and reaped the rewards: this show was packed to the rafters and rocking.

Of course The Cadillac Three aren’t that much to look at. So low key was their laid back entrance that the uninitiated might have believed the band’s roadies and techs were still readying the stage for the evening’s big stars. Nope. This was the band. The Cadillac Three are all about substance and less about the style and there was no mistaking the main men once Jaren Johnston, Neil Mason and Kelby Ray kicked into gear.

At its quietest and most reflective theirs is a sound rooted in classic country. But when The Cadillac Three really kick off it’s all about the Southern rock. And perhaps it’s that familiar fusion of traditional genres that’s all but catapulted the Tennessee trio into the country rock crossover big leagues.

Johnston’s take on It Ain’t My Fault – after which he referenced Brothers Osborne as his ‘favourite band’ – was both heartfelt and hilarious. But there’s a serious side to the accomplished singer songwriter and an affecting charm at the root of Bury Me In My Boots, Long Hair Don’t Care and ultimate anthem The South.

The Cadillac Three always looked at home in a basement club but they’re not out of place on a much bigger stage. Rumour has it that next year’s return to the UK will be bigger and bolder still. There’s talk of another new record and another thrilling new chapter in the story of a three-piece sailing along on a wave of redneck euphoria.

Dang If We Didn’t see that coming…

*Images by Adam Kennedy