Nick Waterhouse w/Ben Pirani
The Crocodile, Seattle, WA

Classic guitars, bygone sounds, and rhythms that swirled around the room. That was the scene at The Crocodile as soulful rocker Nick Waterhouse brought us back to the sound of ’50s rock and soul.

Opening the night was Ben Pirani; tall and lanky and full of spunk. “Thank you Seattle…..for all of the allergens that are killing me more than New York pollution,” said Pirani, before heading right into a soulful performance of his own brand of dance rock. A nice tidbit of information is his connection to Seattle through the Emerald City Soul Club. With three-part harmonies behind him and his trusty tambourine, he warmed up the crowd nicely for Mr. Waterhouse.

Waterhouse came on stage suited up with his Buddy Holly specs with the rest of his seven-piece band behind him. Hailing from L.A, Waterhouse has honed a sound that’s equal parts rock, soul, and doo-wop. A foundation built on driving drums, tight brass, and quick guitar licks. Basically, they are like the band from Back to the Future’s “Enchantment Under the Sea” dance.

Touring in support of his newly released self-titled record, the majority of his set contained tunes from it. The sultry “I Feel An Urge Coming On” got the front row to start the dancing, which would not stop until the last note. Each song had mini-jams that highlighted the rest of his band. Whether it be gut-busting saxophone solos or a frenetic keyboard riff, Waterhouse was smiling for each of his fellow bandmates during their time in the limelight.

Closing out the night was the encore of “Trouble” and “This Is A Game,” two standout songs from Waterhouse’s earlier works as a tribute to those who stayed until the end. If you ever want to feel like you are at a garage party from a generation ago, check out Nick Waterhouse and bring your dancing shoes.

Review and photos by Phillip Johnson

Nick Waterhouse

Ben Pirani