It feels preposterous to suggest a band who formed in 2008 are enjoying a meteoric rise, but in the case of the Teskey Brothers, it makes a weird kind of sense. They spent nine years playing the bars of Melbourne; it wasn’t until the release of their 2017 album Half Mile Harvest that they performed outside of the state of Victoria. Three albums later and they are playing tonight on the other side of the world in Glasgow, Scotland to a full house.
Once in a while a band sweeps across the globe and captures worldwide attention, as its followers quickly swell & grow. The Teskey Brothers are currently one of those rare musical phenomena which are fast becoming one of the world’s hottest groups, with their wonderful blues/soul/rock sound of yesteryear. It’s more peculiar still when you consider the Teskey Brothers’ music. Their sound occupies a space bordered on one side by old-fashioned Muscle Shoals southern soul ballads and on the other by the late-60s blues revival (think the dirt of Stax & Muscle Shoals rather than polish of Motown), and a dedication to authentically capture the essence of their embodied influences Their music is comfortingly recognisable from the off, with lead singer Josh Teskey’s soulful croons lulling the band and audience alike into the opening of the performance.
Even up high in the balcony there are people singing along to every word of every song. Teskey and his bandmates are a paradigm of indie musicians complete with long hair and battered boots, offering an aesthetic beyond the music. Josh has a fantastic voice, he moves away from the microphone and sings un-amplified to prove it, the years slogging around bars have left the band and their accompanying horn section impossibly tight, with perfect vocal harmonies.
The driving force behind the Teskey’s are the brothers themselves; Josh’s super-soulful and earthy vocals lead the way, while Sam’s guitar work is masterful, all the while colouring each song with a deft touch and discerning ear. Said of his brother’s playing; “Sam doesn’t play the guitar, he sings it.” It would be fair to say that as a unit, The Teskey Brothers have their shit together. The Teskey Brothers deliver a carefully structured performance with few surprises and little room for imagination.
Their lyrics are inspiring even if they do include some unmissable clichés dealing with themes of love, loneliness and adversity. However, despite this, there is no doubt this was an expertly delivered set of the band’s greatest songs. Overall the Teskey Brothers delivered a set full of classic blues, rock and soul influences with incredible musicianship and fantastic chemistry. It’s clear they’re having the best time performing and their energy was absolutely infectious. It was a performance that simultaneously felt fresh and modern whilst also having a timeless quality about it, and I absolutely loved it. I can’t wait to hear more from them…here’s hoping they’re back in the UK soon.