Four-piece New Jersey band The Gaslight Anthem played their biggest U.K. headline show to date with a one-night stand at the legendary Brixton Academy in London. Fresh from supporting Pearl Jam in Hyde Park the day before, the band opened proceedings with their new albums namesake “American Slang.” Much of their set was made up of recent songs, including “Queen of Lower Chelsea,” “Stay Lucky” and “Bring It On.” The biggest cheers of the night came for their seminal hit “The 59 Sound.” They ended their set with a cover of The Who’s classic “Baba O’Riley,” which cemented their reputation as one of America’s greatest exports.
The Gaslight Anthem’s singer and guitarist Brian Fallon played his 1956 Gibson Les Paul Goldtop VOS throughout their powerful performance, meanwhile the band’s other guitarist Alex Rosamilia used his 1968 Gibson ES-355 and a 1990s “Black Beauty” Les Paul with coil taps and out of phase switches. The band can next be seen in the U.K. playing on the main stage at the Reading and Leeds Festival on August 27-28.
Talking exclusively to Gibson.com recently, Fallon discussed how the sound of the band has developed on the new album American Slang and how the Gibson guitars both he and Alex play helped create that perfect sound.
“I think our sound that we’ve developed for this record is what we’ll stay with throughout our careers. For me, I always played guitars that my heroes played for that reason only, but I couldn’t play my best on them and I always felt my sound was thin. I’ll never forget the day I got my first ’56 Les Paul Goldtop VOS in my hands. I was able to play comfortably because I have big hands and the big ’50s necks are perfect for me. But really, the main thing is the sound of the guitars, they helped me shape what was in my head. I heard the sounds of the old John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers records, and old Fleetwood Mac, when Peter Green was the singer. It really enabled me to hear different types of sounds, which inspired me to write things I never would’ve thought of before. On a lot of our old records, I would always have to play big open cowboy chords and that’s it, because I had to fill a certain space up sonically, and I was limited. I don’t have to do that now, I’ve found the finesse again. I’ve also found a guitar I feel is an extension of my fingers, it kinda speaks to me a little. I’m very precious about guitars.”
The Gaslight Anthem’s new studio album, American Slang, is out now and they will tour the U.K. in October and November. For more information on the band and tour dates, visit www.myspace.com/thegaslightanthem.
Photo Credit: John Rahim