Thomas Wynn and the believers – Craufurd arms, Milton Keynes – 27th June 2018

Pat Dam Smyth

Tonight’s gig suffered attendance-wise with it being mid-week and scorching hot sunny weather, meaning people preferred to stay outside rather than heading to a gig in a hot venue. It’s a real shame as anyone who didnt attend missed a great night.

The night kicked off with Pat dam Smyth, a singer-songwriter from Northern Ireland. He opened the set with a soft almost acoustic cover of the Velvet Underground song “Pale blue eyes”. It’s a beautiful song anyway and he did a fantastic job with his cover. For the next song he gets a bit more lively with the guitar before switching to the keyboard for most of the set. It’s a really impressive set, and with some of the songs being from his recent EP, Goodbye Berlin, it’s a real shame he only had vinyl copies at the merch stand – had he got CDs on sale I’d certainly have bought one.
It’s not rock or folk or blues, just great music. If you get the chance to see him play live – do it, you won’t regret it.

Thomas Wynn & the believers

Then it was time for Thomas Wynn and the believers. He and his band are from Florida, and while he plays guitar and sings, his sister adds her vocals – sometimes lead vocals, sometimes just backing vocals. They’re joined by a drummer, keyboard player, bassist and another member who plays acoustic guitar or harmonica depending on the song.

You can tell a lot about a band by watching how they react to an almost empty room. Despite there only being around 20 people there, they didn’t even consider taking it easy and gave the same show they’d have done if there had been a few thousand people there – it’s clear to see that they really love what they do and consider anyone turning up a bonus, especially as they aren’t well known here yet.
I say they aren’t well known here – but with a performance at Ramblin Man fair this weekend (1.25pm Saturday on the Outlaw country stage), I think they’re going to gain a whole load of new fans. It’s fantastic music – Southern rock with a hint of soul and it’s really catchy stuff. There are long instrumental sections and you can really see them getting lost in the moment as they do what they love.

Thomas Wynn & the believers

One of the songs tonight is one that Thomas Wynn wrote with Tyler Bryant (who is also playing Ramblin Man), and it’s a great song, but doesn’t stand out against the rest of the set, such is the strength of the songs Thomas Wynn & the believers have. Like many of the audience members I bought a CD after the show and was glad to hear that once they finish their UK dates they’ll be heading home to Florida to work on their new album.

Tonight’s gig was a fantastic night out – Pat Dam Smyth was a great support act, and had he been the only act I wouldnt have been disappointed, but then Thomas Wynn & the believers put in a superb performance. A fantastic band that I look forward to seeing again soon.
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About Ant May

I spend half my life at gigs or festivals and the other half writing the reviews and editing photos, and somehow find time for a full time job too. Who needs sleep - I've got coffee.
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