NO SINNER — Live in London

We saw NO SINNER at the superb BORDERLINE venue this Tuesday.

The band from Vancouver, British Columbia are currently on their “ Old Habits Die Hard” European tour.

Their core blues rock sound is augmented by superior guitar-play, liquid keys and a motoring rhythm section.

But what sets this band apart are the surprisingly gritty and emotional unnerving vocals from singer-sonwrite and superior alpha-woman Colleen Rennison.

No Sinner - "The blues contralto voice raises like a Whip Snake preparing to strike..." Photo Credit: Neil Mach
No Sinner – “The blues contralto voice raises like a Whip Snake preparing to strike…” Photo Credit: Neil Mach

Songs like “Leadfoot” have pushed energy and jabbing drive propelled by an urgent ryhthm section and a sparkling guitar that lives to excite.

The blues contralto voice raises like a Whip Snake preparing to strike. At Borderline this was a fine start to a magnificent set.

Tryin” has a chortle of mellifluous guitar that ripples through it like a bubbling brook on the Cottonwood River.

The song is punctuated by careful keyboards and crossed by beautiful rhythms, but the best part is the groovy centrepiece. This allows the song to wallow deep, and when it does the magnifying effect of the smoky articulation takes-hold.

Colleen’s lyrical voice swoops and glides, moving smoothly and efficiently around the classic rock backbone with all its psychedelic distortions and intrinsic awareness.

At the Borderline “Friend of Mine” is a moderately paced mover with an unhurried swing.

The audience became visibly fascinated by the precious beauty of Colleen’s voice here … the way it reached moments of ascendent highs, then deep purple lows the next. The fervor and commitment on this number was truly mesmerizing.

Perhaps one of the weakest songs [newly released as a video] is the cover “All Woman.

The No Sinner version purrs like a sultry dancer in a smoky burlesque club. It is filled with scanty lace-works until the shout-out chorus where it pivots itself an exciting lead-guitar break.

This was one of the most exciting and spirited female rock vocal performances we have seen in a long time.

If you haven’t added “No Sinner” to your list of favourite female-fronted hard-rock acts of all time, now’s the time.

Word & Pictures: Neil Mach 2016 ©


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