Live Music Review: Hockley Hustle 2017 - Part 2

Words: Rachael Halaburda
Sunday 22 October 2017
reading time: min, words

From JamCafe to the Spiegltent, Nottingham's all-day charity jamboree brought the city together a shone a light on its local music scene...


A world class one man show, performed on cello by Sheku Kanneh-Mason. As he began to play you could physically feel the atmosphere change as the audience became captivated in the beauty of his music.  I found the performance very emotive, with one instrument he had the power to change the feeling of the whole room from mellow to lively and then back again. At such a young age Sheku has achieved so much; being BBC’s Young Musician Of The Year 2016, followed up by an appearance on BBC’s The One Show, and further performances at world class venues. As musicians go, Sheku is up there with the greats, with perfect control in every note. His performance was filled with commendable etiquette, dressed smartly and giving a small bow as thanks at the end of each piece.  It was the kind music you could close your eyes to and let it take you somewhere, as such you could see in Sheku’s face, losing himself in the music.  At the end of the performance I managed to catch a moment with Sheku. Being from Nottingham himself he told me, “It’s great to come back home, I love to perform in the relaxed vibe and setting of Nottingham”.  This amazing home grown musician’s performance was held in the SpigelTent, set with a rounded stage, and all wooden floors and walls, the acoustics worked perfectly as well its beautiful aesthetic, all contributing to the wonder of his music.

These guys were like nothing I’ve seen before, imagine the music you get from a typical colliery band – and then put the biggest twist on it you can – and then you have yourself The Hackney Colliery Band. The vibe in the room during this performance was electric, you had no choice but to feel the music. From a slight head bob to full on dancing, there was no way you couldn’t move to this music. They performed a wide range, from their own pieces to covers from bands like Nirvana. The venue was packed, every bit of floor space was covered with captivated listeners. The band were very interactive with the audience, creating a friendly and chilled out vibe – which is exactly what Nottingham is all about. People seemed to get a real sense of enjoyment from the band’s enthusiastic call and response, as well as clapping along to the beat together as one mighty crowd.  Both visibly and audibly the band was perfectly coordinated in musical intimacy. They consisted of 8 men and one woman, after ten years and four albums the group are stronger than ever. A piece that I found particularly impressive was Re-awake, the baseline beat running throughout matching the heartbeat of the writer’s baby, during his wife’s pregnancy. They also performed an entirely contrasting piece, described as ‘Cathartic Rave Jazz’; and if that’s your thing, you couldn’t get much better than this.  A moment that really surprised me, is when rap was introduced into the performance - still accompanied by the instrumental. This act could only be described as beautifully crafted artwork for the ears, with the people of Nottingham as their eager listeners. Overall these guys gave it their all!  After chatting with them - they described their niche style act as “a rock band with trumpets and trombones”.  I’d say that fits just right.


The up and coming Jaque Seviour artist gave a powerful acoustic performance in front of Homemade Café. The lead singer’s vocals were truly impressive, he had the ability to put emotion and power into every song, giving meaning to each and every word. It’s a really beautiful sight to see an artist getting so into a performance. The band brought in some audience interaction, creating a charming scene with band and audience singing old classics together.

Set in the Revolution bar at the BBC Introducing stage, once again a packed out venue, Vega Bay gave a lively performance, with the support of a highly enthusiastic crowd. This indie band has a very distinctive sound that had the crowd going from the very first moment. Their use of unique instrumental guitar lines, gave them a new and exciting sound – there is no doubt that these guys couldn’t perform without leaving behind an energetic buzz. These four Nottingham lads obviously had a passion for performing, and this passion was truly infectious.  


The individual style band, Whisky Stain, “inspired by women, whisky and blues”, created an atmosphere that could only be described as intoxicating, with the venue entirely full, and the queue to get in lined up down the street.  The band’s instrumental abilities were incredible, true rockers. This two man group gave a very professional performance, the lead singer’s voice was like no other I’ve heard – like a Chet Faker with a sprinkle of groove and a whole lot of rock. Held in the Jam Café it gave the group a perfect setting to perform in, with its individual look and quirky style. This band had some of the best audience interaction I had seen throughout the day. Setting the scene for each of their songs providing relatable scenarios to make some wholeheartedly enjoyable music. Every single person in the crowd was up on their feet dancing and moving, the vibe was truly contagious. In three words these guys described themselves as “energetic, punchy, and fun”; and I couldn’t have put it better myself. Definitely a band to look out for.

Hockley Hustle took place on Sunday 8 October 2017.

Hockley Hustle website

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