|Lisa de'Ville live at The Malt Cross for Oxjam Nottingham 2010|
By now, most music-loving Nottinghamites will have noticed that Oxjam has begun bedding down for the month in our fair city, featuring events across the city to encourage us to get our lazy arses off the sofa and into local venues to hear stellar local music, all with the aim of getting us to dig deep into our linty pockets to raise money for Oxfam. It kicked off on Saturday with a cosy autumnal night at the Malt Cross that showcased some of the best folk this city has to offer.
Taking the stage first was Lisa de’Ville, a staple of any Nottingham muso’s diet, emanating as always an understated sense of passion, soul and cool. Backed by Joe Watts on electric guitar and Justin Lowel on bass, her hauntingly beautiful melodies, dripping with emotion and dark undertones, resonated around the stunning walls of the Malt Cross and straight through the hearts of the audience.
|Gallery 47 live at The Malt Cross for Oxjam Nottingham 2010|
Next was Gallery 47, whose clear, pure voice was pitch perfect and beautifully melodic, floating over the lovely meaty chords and expert finger-picking from his guitar. From modern folk to more traditional sounds, he sung his way through a genuinely lovely set of delicate yet powerful songs.
|The Will Jeffrey Band live at The Malt Cross for Oxjam Nottingham 2010|
The Will Jeffrey Band took the stage in a flurry of bluesy, growling Americana cut with tentative acoustic folk, with occasionally dark currents flowing underneath. Jeffrey’s gravelly vocal tones worked perfectly with his band of charming troubadours, and his style was so varied that I couldn’t decide whether I should be drinking bourbon on the banks of the Mississippi or a pot of tea with a scone. Either way, it was a thoughtfully put-together set that played the pace perfectly, and showed the audience why Will and his band are ones to take notice of.
|Spaceships Are Cool live at The Malt Cross for Oxjam Nottingham 2010|
Closing up the evening were Spaceships are Cool, one of the city’s most innovative and unusual acts, both musically and performance-wise. Clad in orange NASA jumpsuits, they played through a set that included an expertly handled theremin (by no means an easy feat), an omnichord (which I had to google out of intrigue), plinky bleepy synths, a bubble machine, a viola, and Rob Maddison’s trademark playful vocals. Their music walks a glorious line between childlike whimsy and perfectly crafted electronica, and their set filled the room with a uplifting sense of fun and frolicsome charm, as well as lots of bubbles. Just what we all needed before facing the cold, windy night outside.
The Big Oxjam Nottingham Takeover featuring Spaceships Are Cool, The Will Jeffrey Band, Gallery 47 and Lisa de'Ville took place at The Malt Cross on Saturday 2 October 2010.