Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats practically explodes with deep, primal and ecstatic soulfulness. This stunning work isn't just soul stirring, it's also soul baring, and the combination is absolutely devastating to behold. You don’t just listen to this record—you experience it!
With what has got to be the singalong foot-stomper party song of the summer — "SOB" — Rateliff has nailed his musical target: "I want the experience to be joyous, for people to feel excited and dance around, instead of being super-bummed by reality," he says.
The Denver-born singer-songwriter first made an impression on critics and fans in 2010 with his folky solo debut, In Memory of Loss — and the Bon Iver and Mumford & Sons comparisons flowed in thick and fast. But hold on — after releasing the follow-up Falling Faster than You Can Run, Rateliff is pivoting from melancholy acoustic reflections to the exuberance of a new project with seven-piece soul band, the Night Sweats. The band's eponymous debut album gleans inspiration from soul greats like Otis Redding and Sam & Dave, channeled through the lyrical honesty that has underpinned Rateliff's work to date.
The video for SOB, directed by Greg Barnes, features Rateliff and his band serenading a rapt audience of prisoners in a mess hall, perhaps in homage to Johnny Cash's prison performances in the 1950s and 1960s.
It's entirely fitting that the self-titled album bears the iconic logo of Stax Records, because this gifted multi-instrumentalist is channeling the legacy of the legendary Memphis label, yet he's also setting out into audacious new territory.
1. I Need Never Get Old
2. Howling At Nothing
3. Trying So Hard Not To Know
4. I’ve Been Failing
6. Wasting Time
7. Thank You
8. Look It Here
10. I’d Be Waiting
11. Mellow Out