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The Struts Bring Outsized Rock And Roll To Lincoln Hall

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on Sep 17, 2015 9:15PM

The Struts (Photo by Jonas Ã…kerlund)

The Struts have only been together since 2012, but their sound is a huge wallop of history that belies their years. Their latest EP Have You Heard only holds 4 songs in under 15 minutes, but the effect of the music lingers on far after the needle hits that final groove. It's bookended by "Could Have Been Me" and "Where Did She Go," and those two songs alone would make an excellent case for inking this quartet into the classic rock pantheon. But we wondered, would the band deliver live?

After a two-night sold-out stand at Lincoln Hall the answer to that query is HELL YES.

The Struts stalked the small stage at Lincoln Hall as if they were commanding a capacity crowd at Wembley Stadium. Vocalist Luke Spiller channeled equal parts Freddie Mercury and Mick Jagger—which is ridiculously audacious—and managed to execute this balancing act with aplomb. Backed by Adam Slack on guitar, Jed Elliott on bass, and drummer Gethin Davies, Spiller and his crew held the packed room in their thrall throughout their entire set.

At one point Spiller jumped to the general admission section of the venue and without saying a word spread his arms apart to part the crowd as if her were crossing the Red Sea. Then he managed to get everyone lying on the floor with another simple entreaty. Thank god this guy has devoted his attentions to rock and/or roll and not to building up a cult hellbent on evil deeds.

The band commands the stage, full of sparkle and glam and not just a little bit of make-up, to deliver a set that's intent on getting members of both sexes all hot and bothered. There are a lot of rolling R's in Spiller's vocal delivery, which carries through the effect of being arch with a heavy wink to the audience. If Rocky Horror's Dr. Frank-N-Furter fronted a band it would look a lot like this.

The band closed with "Where Did She Go" and Lincoln Hall was transformed from a medium-sized venue into a huge, stadium sing-along. After so many decades of attending shows I rarely get rocked on my heels, but this moment sent veritable chills down my spine. In an age when the "real deal" tend to be illusory, The Struts are actually the real deal. As the crowd filtered out of the room, the band retreated backstage for a couple beers but seemed uncomfortable in those environs. Restless, the quartet escaped to the alley for a couple cigarettes and it was there they met a few fans that formed a small crowd. Only then did they seem at ease.

The Struts were born to entertain.