Highly Suspect + Bones 10/26/17, Memphis

Live at the New Daisy Theatre, and a good time was had by all.


Massachusetts’ Highly Suspect has been one of my favorite bands ever since I stumbled across them by chance playing the New Music Experience while on assignment at Bonnaroo in 2015, and Thursday night reminded me why I look forward to photographing and hearing them every chance I get. Highly Suspect has been playing the music festival scene ever since, playing such high profile events as Rock on the Range Rock Festival and Beale Street Music Festival. (BLURT was of course on site at both to cover all the bands and tell you about the new bands you should be adding to your devices.)


With a nearly sold-out show for the New Daisy Theatre, Johnny Stevens and the brothers Meyer (Rich and Ryan) were in rare form, but first the crowd was treated to the band Bones, from London, who have made their way to the U.S. and are quickly making a name for themselves. Although the crowd didn’t know what to expect from this unknown band, as soon as they started playing you could tell they had the “IT” factor. The girls had the crowd jumping and rocking. I think Bones definitely made some new fans and you should also check them out.

Then Highly Suspect opened their part of the show with “Bath Salts” and continued rocking throughout the night with hits such as “Lydia”, “Fuck Me Up”, “My Name Is Human”, and “Little One”. The boys even threw in a little blues to honor the famous Beale Street blues music scene.


If you like real, raw, stripped-down rock and roll, then Highly Suspect is for you. Johnny sings about his real life and things that affect him, and the honest, heartfelt lyrics really come through. The aforementioned “Lydia” is about a girl whom Johnny met when he and the band moved to New York, but their paths were headed in different directions. Meanwhile, Johnny seems to have survived his heavy drug days (that period of the his life is graphically portrayed in the song “Bath Salts”), and he and his band are destined to make it to the top. Noteworthy guests in the crowd included Zach Myers from Shinedown and former lead singer of Full Devil Jacket and current frontman for Day Of Fire Josh Brown.


Text and Photos by Mark Jackson: @markjacksonphotography1            


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