SoFest had a great line-up - not only was it a good mix of genres with universal appeal - it also had cross generation appeal. This was important given the number of families who had made this an outing.
Here's an immediate audio review of the night...
The setting of the Guildhall Square once night had fallen:
We caught the acts from Scarlet Soho onwards - their single "When The Lights Go Out" was their last song - great vocals and atmosphere maintained their eighties feel with a distant echo of the Human League's "Don't you want me baby" which I personally like a lot. Scarlet Soho have a cool funk to them and the band are happy on stage. They put on a good show and were enjoyed by all.
Next up was Burn The Fleet. Their characteristic strong sound with aching guitars and vocals filled the Guildhall Square. Andy – the band’s front man and lead singer captured the friendly and 'banteresque' nature of the band, saying of his drummer Ross "the muscle's from Hedge End". He added that Burn The Fleet were the “most rocky” band that night – and encouraged a circle pit and human pyramid ... As always, Burn The Fleet sounded and performed with natural rock grace and fun.
Burn the Fleet
And backstage ...
They love each other really! :D
You can see in this interview from earlier this year what a gorgeous bunch Burn The Fleet are:
Last up was headliner Artful. Unsurprisingly, this was a fantastic set from this multi award winning musician and producer.
Artful, aka, Mark Hill, is the original Artful Dodger, songwriter, producer, co-writer and producer of Craig David's "Born To Do It". He works with names we all recognize including Ed Sheeran.
This was Artful’s first gig with this set-up. You would never have known. Even before the gig, he was chilled!
On stage, Artful occupies the centre with all his kit. It is immediately apparent that he truly lives in the core of his multi dimensional music while a myriad of sounds and notes burst out from the talented musicians around him. This includes complimenting vocals. We were treated to infectious mixes with building wondrous noises which all added up to a complex and dance inducing rhythm. This was a rewarding feast which had everyone backstage and frontstage jigging along for within it is contained the full range of Artful’s musicality. We feel his talent in the way the music starts and develops: it builds without compromise and without losing that intrinsic human warmth which is so apparent when you speak with him. - You can hear the Welsh valleys in Artful’s love of what he is doing and how the music expands - the whole band are a joy and so contagious I ended up dancing with a group of people I didn't even know. It was great fun!
There is a lot to Artful. He is thoughtful and true and has a family background seeped in pure music. Not only does this resonate in his music and the liberated creativity that he naturally feels and turns into physical beats and unisons of sound, but also in his personality. Our filmed interview with Artful will be out soon and you’ll be able to see for yourself! (That will be coming to our YouTube Channel HERE.)
Finally, the last word I feel should go to the Council. This was an enlightened and lovely event and a wonderful thing to do for Southampton. Thank you.
More on Artful: HERE
More on Burn The Fleet: HERE
More on Scarlet Soho: HERE
Interviews with great musicains and comedians HERE
Songs of the Day HERE
Our sessions HERE