Nathaniel Rateliff is one of those people who has the look of someone that’s lived hard. Those seeing him perform for the first time are often thrown by that gritty exterior and the intensity of his performance. Whilst his hard shell has maybe held him back from communicating in his personal life (which he openly admits), his songs channel that anger, loss and hope in equal measures.
Our Song of the Day is S.O.B., taken from the forthcoming self-titled debut album Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats. It’s a gospel tinged soul stomper whose upbeat delivery initially seems at odds with the lyrics which lay bare a hopeless struggle with drinking. But once you tune in to what it’s all about, there is a crazy side to it that just fits so well with that grit and defiance.
Now for seventeen years I’ve been throwing them back
Seventeen more will bury me
Can somebody please just tie me down
Or somebody give me a goddamn drink
Of course, the other side of the coin is that The Night Sweats brings a new high-powered side of Rateliff to the stage. This is music to dance to! “I try to be lighthearted,” Rateliff says, “because, although the songs are heavy, I want it to be a release for people. I’m trying to do something that’s emotionally charged and heartfelt, and I want the experience to be joyous, for people to feel excited and dance around instead of being super-bummed by reality—I mean, things are hard. But I can remember dancing around to some song that was breakin’ my heart, dancin’ with tears in my eyes. I love that feeling, and I wanna share it with people, and hopefully they’ll feel it too.”
Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats is released August 21st on Stax / Caroline International
UK Tour Dates below:
Sep 30 – Bristol – The Fleece
Oct 01 – Glasgow – Stereo
Oct 02 – Leeds – Belgrave Music Hall
Oct 16 – Brighton – Patterns
Oct 19 – London – Village Underground
Oct 20 – Manchester – The Ruby Lounge
Oct 21 – Dublin – The Workman’s Club
Last year Nathaniel was one of our Artist’s of the Month, check our interview with him here.