The Half Eight Headliner
The Bodega, Nottingham.
The Bodega, Nottingham.
I don't often venture into the world of pub gigs, but after tonight, I may just venture out more often. Upstairs at The Bodega in Nottingham The Half Eight were playing their first headline gig with support from Joshwa Kemp and Holly Fallon.
Josh kicked the night off with a selection of self composed songs like "Leap Of Faith", "You Are" and his latest song inspired by his travels to Asia, "Imaginary Friend". I've seen Josh before and he has a sound of his own, multi tracking vocals, guitar riffs and percussion live to create his own band of one. Josh is a very talented singer, songwriter and musician. His songs are really easy to listen to in any environment and it's always special to hear him play live. Not only is he a brilliant musician and an unassuming performer, he is one of the most hard-working local artists as well as being one hell of a nice guy.
Holly Fallon was up next and this was the first time that I have heard Holly perform live. She performed a mix of cover versions and originals with her guitarist, Jack. Originals like her latest song "Summer" were received just as well as her inspired choice of covers which included her versions of "I'm Yours" mashed up with "Billionaire" and a lovely stripped back version of Irene Cara's "Fame" to end her spot.
After a short break to allow for the main event to be set up behind the erected banner, The Half Eight erupted with an introductory drum break from Hugh which teased the crowd for what was to come. One by one Charlie, James and Oliver exploded onto the stage. It was like lighting the touch paper of some sort of musical explosion because they came on and completely ripped the place apart with a powerhouse rhythm section and exciting vocals from all the band. They slowed down only a couple of times, once for us to get out mobile phones out (the new lighters bit), and the second time to do an almost accapella version of The Lumineers "Hey Ho", splitting the crowd to do the audience participation.
There was a brilliant version of The Killers "Mr Brightside" and One Direction's "Up All Night", which worked really well with the self-penned songs like the brilliantly catchy "Love In The Dark" and the single "Kiss Me Like You Mean It" which closed the show. They were loud and exciting to watch and listen to while getting the crowd going with some simple, but effective audience participation between the songs, and then all too soon the night was over with confetti cannons and a cascade of black and red balloons.
These four lads, Hugh, Charlie, Oliver and James have worked their socks off to create a great rock party atmosphere in a similar mould to Busted and McFly but with a slightly harder edge, still keeping the instantly catchy tunes. And like the bands mentioned the lads play their own instruments as well. A night that was well received by everyone and I for one can't wait for their next show, and for when they get signed so we can take a physical piece of their music home to rock out to and annoy the kids, who already tell me to turn my music down.
A brilliant night featuring some of the cream of Nottingham's local musicians, singers and songwriters, who should be supported at this level, because tomorrow they may be playing arenas, and then you'll regret missing out.
For more information about the three artists, you can go to their respective Facebook sites.