Gig review: HUE AND CRY Album Launch – PRS Building, King’s Cross, London, 3 August 2017

HUE & CRY Album Launch - PRS Building, King's Cross, London, 3 August 2017

Kicking the night off in great humour, Pat Kane informs his attentive audience that tonight we are to be locked in a room 8 floors above the ground for a 20 minute jazz odyssey.

Luckily this was a joke.

Instead, they started this celebratory set with the old favourite ‘Looking For Linda’. The first thing I noticed is that the band sound fantastic, featuring eight of the top contemporary jazz and funk musicians in Scotland, they were a tight ensemble who meld together very naturally.

Pat Kane has completely surpassed his youth in terms of vocal prowess. He has a certain maturity now, something only obtainable with age and the famous Malcolm Gladwell 10,000 Hour Rule. His control and diction in every line is something many young pop singers could learn from.

The next few tracks of the set were pulled from the upcoming record ‘Pocketful Of Stones’, and showcased the Kane brothers longstanding ability to weave a venerable loom of contemporary balladry.

HUE & CRY Album Launch - PRS Building, King's Cross, London, 3 August 2017

The heavily nostalgic crowd were absolutely enamoured however, when Pat bought out his daughter Eleanor to duet on the heart-wrenching number ‘Let Her Go’, detailing the pair’s emotional turmoil at Eleanor leaving home for college. Not a dry eye in the house, I assure you.

The mid-paced numbers from the new album were certainly met with an animated response, but when the new album’s opener ‘It Happened Her’ dropped in the middle of the set, a eureka moment fell upon the audience as Hue And Cry revealed they still have the supreme faculty to pen tension filled political numbers that absolutely permeate energy.

What Hue and Cry set would be complete without the classic ‘Labour Of Love’? The track was sizzling with fiery funk as the band took it in a more modern direction, opposing the classic 80s sound of the original recording.

If you can get out and see them on the upcoming tour for the new record, I advise you do so, even just to see how a band with an invested interest in evolving their sound can take vintage tracks from their repertoire to new, contemporary heights.

I’d also like to give honourable mention how great the PRS concert space is. Just a fantastic little venue to showcase bands of all sizes (8 musicians is not a small number keep in mind!).

Review by Sylvester Segal

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