April 26, 2013

the best band in denver. boom.

nathaniel rateliff and the night sweats

Last night in the span of five songs at the Bluebird Theater, in an opening set, I watched Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats become the best band in Denver. It was their very first show and holy mackerel you guys, I was speechless.

My cheeks flushed all red, my friend Andrew and I just kept looking at each other with jaws dropped. As those horns wailed, the piercing songwriter troubadour was reborn as a writhing, kicking soul singer with a seven-piece band behind him. As I surveyed the room, there was a similar look of pure joy on everyone’s faces, as Nathaniel yowled and yelled like a man possessed.

I know my video skills last night were extremely sub-par (I figure it out, and rotate my phone) but this electrified minute of video will give you some idea.

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats’ next show is Friday, May 17 at the Boulder Theater, and they’re opening for Dawes at the Mishawaka on May 24.

As Nathaniel sings here: son of a bitch / god damn.

SATURDAY MORNING UPDATE OF ECSTASY: Someone recorded the ENTIRE show in hi-def video!!


  • Wow. That was an amazing clip from last night! You are not kidding, that man is on fire.

    Basho — April 26, 2013 @ 1:17 pm

  • I was there. I agree.

    Ian O — April 26, 2013 @ 1:20 pm

  • Not because he is my cousin, but because he is AWESOME. God. Damn!

    Felicia Mae — April 26, 2013 @ 1:27 pm

  • I wasn’t there but I’ve been listening to that pretty much non-stop single since I grabbed it at Record Store Day. I’m glad I can share the Mp3s. Do you know who all makes up the Night Sweats?

    Matt Pusatory — April 26, 2013 @ 1:30 pm

  • Matt, the only person I recognized was Joseph Pope III on guitar, and some of the guys that play with A. Tom Collins…

    browneheather — April 26, 2013 @ 1:40 pm

  • So you’re saying go to Mishawaka instead of Joe Pug and Anais Mitchell on the 24th?

    Lashley — April 26, 2013 @ 1:53 pm

  • I’m gonna be camping at the Meadowgrass Fest that whole weekend, seeing good music, so I am glad I don’t have to make Sophie’s Choice choices like that one :)

    browneheather — April 26, 2013 @ 1:57 pm

  • That’s Mark Shusterman (of The Blue Rider) on keys.

    Kyle — April 26, 2013 @ 2:23 pm

  • Everything Nathaniel does has been great. I’m a big fan.

    Based on the video you have put up, I’ll suggest another band you might like to check out if you haven’t yet heard of them: Irreverend James and the Critical Mass Choir, a Montreal group.


    Suzanne Lainson — April 26, 2013 @ 7:39 pm

  • Kick ass seabass

    Jim — April 27, 2013 @ 4:22 am

  • matt,
    the nightsweats are Alex Hebert (a. tom collins) on drums,
    Rett Rogers (blue rider) on bass, joe pope III (miss america) on guitar, Mark Schusterman (blue rider) on keys, Andy Wild (a. tom collins) on sax, Joe tabano (a. tom collins) on trumpet.
    that was one of the best sets i’ve seen in a long time. here, here, heather!

    esme — April 27, 2013 @ 8:26 am

  • I’d be interested to have a conversation about how attending a live performance affects ones perception of a band. I find that I’m far more likely to get behind/advocate for a band I’ve first seen live than those I’ve only heard recordings of. Some of what I’m trying to say is fairly obvious, and I recognize that, but I do seem to read enough reviews and critiques of bands that sometimes fall short in their acknowledgement to the reader/listener that their thoughts and opinions are coming from experiences gained through live interaction and not a recording. NPR’s All Songs Considered falls into this quite often. All things said, I do enjoy their program, but I have ran into a few occasions where one of their reviewers will proclaim that coming of some fantastical indie band they caught at SXSW which then sends me into full investigation mode. After engaging the recordings I’m left wondering what I missed, as the album I just dove into doesn’t come within a mile of the glowing recommendation that preceded it. Even worse, I’ll have a harder time coming into a band if I see them live after the letdown of having them recommended to me and then being disappointed in their album. Their repuation is negatively preceding them when this happens. I feel that if the sequence of recommendation, listening, and live performance were arranged differently I wouldn’t experience this as much.

    In this particular case I found there to be a pretty noticable disconnect from the jaw dropping performance that the reviewer witnessed and what I saw and heard in the video and EP recordings. Nathaniel is a phenomenal talent, I’ve gotten to see him live a couple times with his (old?) band and I’ve always walked away really moved by his fervency. He has this nuance about his songwriting that is at the same time delicate and devastating. I missed that from these songs. I thought they came across a bit derivative and single layered in the recordings. You can tell Nathaniel has needed to get some ya-yas out after playing several years behind his more intimate sounding ensemble. I understand as well that The Night Sweats are still in their infancy and may grow past some the perceived shortcomings. Regardless, I’m always going to be a Nathaniel Rateliff fan and will be excited for whatever endeavors he’s attached with.

    I’ve rambled here, I realize. The meat of what I’m driving at is not for critics and reviewers to stop writing or recommending. Rather, just an observation that I believe bears acknowledgement from those doing the recommending.

    darvinlikemarvin — April 27, 2013 @ 2:59 pm

  • Lucero-John Spencer Blues EX and even Danko Jones do it better—-zzzzzzzzzzzz

    Felt like i was watching a filler band from a blue brothers remake.

    Phat Pat — April 27, 2013 @ 5:29 pm

  • HORNS, HORNS, HORNS! THAT Style, THAT Sound = My Favorite Type of Music… Whoever liked this clip, should give a quick listen to Southside Johnny and The Asbury Jukes (and do not be too quick to dismiss them based on what you “thought” they were all about)


    Very Similar to The Night Sweats!

    Kevin — April 28, 2013 @ 8:39 am

  • Otis Redding called and would like his riffs back…

    Tex — April 29, 2013 @ 2:55 pm

  • One of those bands that make me excited about music…… wow. Incredible.

    Mina — May 2, 2013 @ 4:18 pm

  • Love me some Nathaniel- Before, now and probably always, But… I’m fairly certain I just saw Calder’s Revolver’s do this same style a few months ago. And honestly from the clips.. I much preferred them. Won’t stop me from going to see this set up asap though!

    WC — May 8, 2013 @ 2:25 pm

  • [...] Rateliff’s new gig is getting great press. Heather’s abrupt opening statement on how she “watched Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats become the best band in Denver” is what initially drew in this busy dad to tune in. So, despite my sharp instincts against [...]

    Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats @ Hi-Dive 2013.06.01 « Merry Swankster — July 3, 2013 @ 3:53 pm

  • […] Rateliff’s work with his band The Night Sweats back in 2013 when Fuel/Friends wrote a glowing review of their live set and labelled their single one of her favourite releases of 2013. Since, Adam on Songsfortheday has […]

    Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats Announce EP — May 19, 2015 @ 9:14 am

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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