Revival R&B Singer, Nick Waterhouse’ 12-song set for his record release at the Eagle Rock Center for the Arts felt like an underwater bubble jungle party in 1954. Every throw-back stitch was perfect. Every soul spirit from James Brown to Amy Winehouse seemed to fill the space for inspiration. And every pair of horn-rim spectacles was glued to the stage. This, indeed, was a happy nerd gathering of all things retro.
Waterhouse has been on this planet for a mere 25 years but his homage to vintage soul feels like that of a lively octogenarian. He has gone the fully monty with his tribute that feels mostly authentic, even coming from a Southern California white boy. That said, Waterhouse may at times be a little stiff (this writer chalks it up to humility) and seems to not quite fit into his tailored suit.
Surrounded by a packed stage, any lack of rock lawlessness, however, was salvaged by the nine fun-times having band members, especially Waterhouse’ female back-up vocalists, who shimmied and shook the vibes till they all got loose.
Waterhouse and gang hit their stride on “Some Place,” from the May 1, 2012, Innovative Leisure release, Times All Gone. The packed venue rumbled with bouncing heads and adulation. Couples in plaid made space to dance to the final moments of the crooner’s set, where he took a brief, humble bow and snuck off back stage. The show’s last quarter was its peak where Waterhouse and crew had just gained momentum.
official video “Some Place”