Review: Steve Earle is still the king of Americana
Another year, another new Steve Earle CD and another Belfast gig from the main man of Americana.
This time, Earle and his Dukes and Duchesses rolled into the Limelight 1, and was hopelessly sold-out.
Promoters the Real Music Club certainly couldn't have wished for a more successful night to celebrate 15 years of bringing authentic artists to Northern Ireland.
Earle and co hit the spot whether you were crushed at the front or straining to see on tiptoes at the back of the room.
With "one foot in the 1930s", the 58-year-old frontman grizzled through two hours of hits, new tracks and covers, punctuating proceedings with his trademark politicised speeches.
Indeed, "hard times" are a recurring theme, and last night's crowd seemed on the same page judging by the yells of approval.
In a set veering from rock to blues to folk to country and back, tracks from current album The Low Highway nestled nicely beside favourites like Copperhead Road and The Galway Girl.
His ever more lived-in voice, together with potent musical backing, proved more than enough to keep the crowd going late into this Sunday night.