Concert Review: Ryan Bingham and the Dead Horses at Birdy's, June 4 

Neither torrential rain, wind, hail nor the gloom of tornado warnings kept Ryan Bingham and the Dead Horses from pushing through the mountains of Pennsylvania to their gig in Indianapolis. The harrowing drive did not slow down Bingham and his band once they hit the stage.

Bingham and the Dead Horses played a long high-energy set that showed off his Texas music roots — from mariachi to boot stomping road house rock. The ground covered by the band made Bingham’s music hard to define but easy to listen to. They had the attention of the audience the whole time, with people dancing and stomping their feet to the tunes.

Bingham’s whiskey- and cigarettes-steeped voice, often compared to Tim Waits, perfectly suited the songs. “I’m a book, not a page ...” Bingham sang, and you believe it. His deeply personal and revealing songs belie his young age, but tell the tale of a difficult life lived. After a childhood of moving so often he quit unpacking his cardboard box, Bingham struck out on his early teens. He picked up a guitar and started writing songs between gigs on the rodeo circuit.

The set ended with a blaze of slide guitar, good cheer and a crowd ready for the next time Bingham hits town.  


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