His Lordship at Lafayette
As the trio step on stage, opening with the feverish All Cranked Up, one thing is immediately clear: this is the kind of gig that will leave you bobbing your head for a while, and wanting more of that intoxicating rock’n’roll. At first glance, His Lordship‘s attire – cheap suits – and overall rockabilly allure might suggest a nostalgic jump back in time, evidence of a penchant for the retro and homage to an era that is no more. But this is not a band interested in the past; their lyrics are well anchored in the present, offering a chance to sway and dance, sweat the past off, and enter a dimension of raw, ravenous punk.
Born from the ashes of lockdown, His Lordship is the initiative of guitarist James Walbourne (The Pretenders, The Pogues, The Rails) and Kristoffer Sonne (Chrissie Hynde, Willie Nelson), later joined by bassist Dave Page on tour. The whole concert feels like a scream that has been held back for far too long. Soul-piercing guitar solos, with Walbourne dropping to his knees as he shakes the audience awake, remind us of where we were a few years ago and where we are now – which seems to be the main theme of their debut EP, All Cranked Up.
Music is how they let it all out: the rage, frustration, claustrophobia, restlessness, boredom and feelings of defeat that most of us will be all too familiar with – being “all cranked up with nowhere to go”, as Walbourne sings in the opener, keeping it short and sweet. They also pay their respects to health workers with the contagiously energetic Jackie Works for the NHS, the defiant, angry spirit of punk coming alive to send a timely message to a crowd who are willing to bob along and listen. The relentless pace slows down for a moment as they play one of their gems, The Repenter, but it picks up again with the deranged My Brother Is an Only Child, with Page on drums and Sonne in the front, singing his heart and soul out.
By of the end of the concert (which comes to a close way too soon – though that’s perhaps for the best, given the levels of energy required to keep up with the trio), the spirit of rock’n’roll has truly possessed everyone in the room, from the lead singer to the bartender. Overall, a highly entertaining experience. If “rock’n’roll is not for everyone”, it definitely is for some.
Photos: Ambra Vernuccio
For further information and future events visit His Lordship’s website here.
Watch the video for the single All Cranked Up here: