Gig Review: Katie Keddie at The Bodega

Words: Maddie Dinnage
Photos: Josh Dwyer
Thursday 22 June 2023
reading time: min, words

Maddie Dinnage reviews Katie Keddie's show at Nottingham's very own Bodega...

Leftlion (3)

Nottingham-based singer-songwriter Katie Keddie injected a little bit of warmth into The Bodega on the 17th with an ethereal headliner set. Since the release of her single Eighteen, a nostalgic ode to those divinely torturous years we know all too well, Katie has caught local attention which her repertoire of chilled tracks. I was lucky enough to catch her home-turf gig, where the artist was supported by some of Nottingham’s greatest local talent.

I arrived at The Bodega just in time to catch Deri Sharman’s opening set. Deri’s performance was the grounding I certainly needed after a hectic workday. I was blissfully surprised by the audience turnout, having seen bigger artists at The Bodega with far smaller crowds. It was so touching to see such overwhelming community support for rising local talent. With fans, friends, and family filling every space wall-to-wall, The Bodega was abuzz with an air of homely comfort.

Deri Sharman is certainly one to watch. Her gentle, earthy vocals were subtly interwoven by a baseline which trickled through each track like water. She has a sound which feels like a natural blend between Birdy and Wolf Alice. It was plain to see the slippage of influences such as Phoebe Bridgers among her emotionally-charged lyrics.

When Katie took the stage for her headline set, the venue was alight with an air of eager anticipation. Naturally, the set began with the song which started it all. Eighteen began with a breezy, angelic soundscape, setting the tone for a series of chilled-out original songs and covers. The instrumentals took on the role of delicate wind chimes, as Katie and her band produced a tonal experience much like the easy breeze of summer afternoons.


Katie was clearly overwhelmed by such an amazing turnout, saying “there’s a lot of you. I’ll try not to cry; I’m not promising anything.” She later admitted to having nightmares in the run up to the gig, in which nobody turned up at all. Quite the contrary, it was beautiful to witness the warm little community which Katie has built through her music.

The artist went on to play vulnerable ballad Comfort and Despair. The crowd was invited to ride the waves of crashing cymbals, suspended in periods of tranquil silence before the return of the heavy drumbeat. Katie and her band alternated between softer and coarser extremes, mimicking the fine line between comfort and despair.

Katie showed her folksy side when performing Another Day, complete with the twang of Jake Buckley’s infectious banjo playing. Perhaps indicative of recent experimentation, Katie finds her sound amongst nature in this track. There has never been a more appropriate soundtrack for dreamily traipsing through a meadow or paddling in a woodland stream. Katie’s vocals have the quality of silky summer sunshine, or the gentle pouring of honey.

After a series of emotional tracks, Katie joked that she would be taking the set somewhere slightly happier saying, “you can sing along to this one if you want. You’ll know it, it’s not mine.’’ She went on to perform her own rendition of Bruce Springsteen’s Dancing in the Dark.


The previously subdued tonal atmosphere was subverted by a performance of Maybe You’re Right in which we witnessed Katie’s true passion for performance. The song was fragmented by the coolest instrumental section, allowing guitarist Tom Purwar and drummer Cam Worne to really let go. A rather still and meek performer up until this point, Katie found some dynamic movement onstage, punctuated by flashing strobe lights. It was a fine thing to witness this alternative facet to Katie’s musical repertoire, which was executed so professionally.

It is always a joy to watch and support local up-and-comers, but it is truly special to find an artist who has discovered such a distinctive sound in the early stages of their musical journey. Throughout the evening, Katie not only took us on a journey through her discography, but on a journey of personal self-discovery. I wait in eager anticipation to see where this singer-songwriter takes her great potential next.

Katie Keddie is set to perform alongside other local talents such as Fat Bamboo and Airport Dad at Nottingham’s own Splendour festival, which will take place on the 22nd and 23rd of July.

Katie Keddie performed at The Bodega on June 17 2023.

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