Hare & Hounds
Review by Mark Wakeman
I was asked at the last minute to review the Sorry gig as the nominated reviewer was unable to attend. I hadn’t got a gig planned so the chance to attend at gig at one of my favourite venues and to review my first This Is Tmrw gig was too good to turn down.
Sorry to people of my generation will bring back memories of the 1980’s sitcom of the same name starring the late great Ronnie Corbett as mummy’s boy librarian Timothy Lumsden. Sorry the band are actually a four piece from London who I had heard good things about.
Usually pre-gig we have the chance to listen to a playlist from the sound engineer’s MP3’s but tonight there was a full DJ booth set up in the corner and we had to endure an interminable DJ set from a couple who in my head I christened John and Yoko.
Initially there was a very sparse crowd but it did eventually grow to a respectable number. But no-one stood closer than a couple of metres from the stage so everyone crowded in behind them.
Finally at just after 8:30pm the support act Wu-Lu took to the stage. I hadn’t heard or seen this band before and with them very quickly mentioning their names I had no real idea who I was watching apart from three guys on stage.
It soon became clear that they were all excellent musicians as they launched into mainly instrumental based songs with minimal lyrics. Their style was a mix of many genres, jazz, reggae and hip-hop fusion played across guitar, bass and drums.
After a couple of long soundscapes the band played more traditional songs with one having very strong social commentary lyrics about being a young black man growing up in London. Before they ended their set with a storming rock out.
Wu-Lu is actually producer and multi instrumentalist Miles Romans-Hopcraft who assembles a collective of talented musicians to record his music. It crosses many genres and with additional musicians on his recordings they would certainly be worth checking out if you have a broad and sophisticated musical palette.
Sorry, consisting of Asha on lead vocals and guitar, Louis on guitar and backing vocals, Campbell on bass and Lincoln on drums assisted by a keyboardist/percussionist, took to the stage at 9:30pm to the strains of ‘Mad World’ by Tears for Fears. ‘Wonderful World’ was a moody opener building to incorporate the Louis Armstrong song of the same name, before things got rockier with ‘Wolf’ and Louis encouraging the crowd to move forward. Sadly during this song the top string on Campbell’s bass broke. Having attended over 100 gigs this year this is the third time in the last couple of weeks that a guitar or a bass string has broken. Unfortunately Wu-lu’s bassist wasn’t anywhere in the room to be able to lend them a bass so Campbell did an incredible job to play the rest of the gig with a three string bass.
‘Starstruck’ had an early Elasticia vibe as Asha really got into her stride vocally. ‘More’ featured some great drumwork from Lincoln and ‘Snakes’ was introduced by a snippet of Kaa’s song from Jungle Book.
Upcoming single ‘Right Round The Clock’ with it’s haunting clock sounds was a clear set highlight. ‘Jealous Guy’ had a clear jazzy feel and was the sort of sound I was told the band excelled at.
The beautifully mellow new song ‘Heather’ was followed by the sleazy rocker ‘Showgirl’ with the great sweet harmonies of Asha and Louis on ‘Ode to Boy’ being the perfect way to get the right mix of songs on a live setlist. ‘Lies’ brought a highly accomplished 45 minute plus set to a great rock out ending.
Sorry are a very talented young band and genuinely nice people to chat to after the show.