To honour the Irish music legend Rory Gallagher, Deuce played a tribute show on his birthday at Arthur’s in Dublin’s Liberties.
Deuce obviously got their name from Rory’s second solo album from 1971. The trio from Kildare (vocals + guitar, bass, drums) met at the annual Rory Gallagher Festival in Ballyshannon (Rory’s hometown) in the West of Ireland in 2012. After the festival they decided to form a dedicated tribute band and bring their late idol’s music onto stage.
The gig started at 9pm, and Arthur’s proved to be the perfect location for the event – good sound, a great atmosphere and decent Guinness. The band opened with Shinkicker, and soon played on of the setlist’s highlights: Laundromat.
Generally, the setlist was a healthy mix of early and late Rory songs, from Hands Off to Bought & Sold, and included all the favourites, such as Tattoo’d Lady, Bad Penny, Shadow Play, I Fall Apart, and Philby.
The audience was in a great mood, especially when Deuce played Moonchild – the venue filled up by the minute.
The band members work together well, whereas the bass was, in fact, a bit more solid than the drums. The singer has obviously put a lot of effort into getting as close as possible to Rory’s unique style of singing and intonation, and has definitely managed to acquire the right timbre for pulling off a great show. Considering that Rory Gallagher was one of the greatest guitarists of all time, he did a good job on the instrumental part.
The performance wasn’t perfect – but the creative twist that Deuce added to the songs was highly enjoyable. It is always nice to see tribute bands that stay true to their idol, while at the same time adopting an individual approach. Surely this is something which proves to be rewarding for the band in terms of artistic development.
One of their last songs was Philby – arguably one of the coolest Rory songs, and one I was also very much looking forward to. It was thus a bit irritating when the verses got mixed up and the chosen tempo was decidedly too fast. When I talked to the frontman about it later, he laughed and confessed to hoping nobody would notice. I told him it didn’t matter and congratulated him on a great show, because that’s what it was. It is just lovely to see that even when a great artist dies, his music continues to live on. And in fact, it was the first time ever for me to have heard Rory’s songs being played live. And it was so worth it.