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» Review: The Mojo Fins

Reviews: December 19th, 2011

Outside, North Laine is thronging with boozy Christmas revellers and work parties, one of which has almost done for Mojo Fins’ singer Stephen Brett. “I ate what amounted to a whole chicken,” he explains, “I’ve got the meat sweats.” In the end, it’s a lack of time rather than seasonal over-indulgence that cut the band’s set a little short tonight, but the glowing guitar melodies of ‘Owning My Condition’ and ‘Lighthouse’ rewarded the devoted audience. Although the room was only half full (is everyone in Brighton on the Mad Friday lash?), the warmth of the band’s sound helped dispel the chill.

Pavilion Theatre, Brighton Dome, 16 December 2011
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Stuart Huggett

» Review: Aloe Blacc

Reviews: December 19th, 2011

There are only two words to describe the final date of Aloe Blaccs UK tour – ‘slick’ and ‘polished’, and I’m not just talking about his sense of style. Nattily dressed the Orange County-born soul singer grabbed the audience with his funky vibe and didn’t let go, even when travelling through his hitless back catalogue. Backed expertly by his band his velvet voice came to the fore with the beautiful ‘Momma Hold My Hand’ and the recession anthem, ‘I Need A Dollar’. His self-proclaimed church of love and happiness is a good place to be, even if you only know one song.

Concert Hall, Brighton Dome, 16 December 2011
Rating: ★★★★☆
Ben Scott

» Review: Seth Lakeman

Reviews: December 19th, 2011

Seth Lakeman, the charming and, let’s face it, rather aesthetically pleasing Mercury-nominated multi-instrumentalist, filled Concorde 2 for his first Brighton gig in a year with a mix of classic self-penned folk numbers such as ‘Blood Upon Copper’ and ‘The Setting Of The Sun’ and tracks from his new album, including the moving, autobiographical ‘Hard Times’. The songs with two acoustic guitars were perhaps a little lacking in dynamics for a live show, but when Seth hit the fiddle he really came into his own and this reached a climax at the end with his solo rendition of ‘Kitty Jay’.

Concorde 2, 14 December 2011
Rating: ★★★★☆
Jenni Davidson

» Review: Uncaged Monkeys – Night Of 200 Billion Stars

Reviews: December 16th, 2011

Uncaged Monkey was pure nourishment for mind and the soul. Marking the last night of this intellectual tour, there were stars of science, comedy and the cosmos in tonight’s show, as we were shown the secrets of NASA by Adam Rutherford in a beautiful visual love poem to the now sadly ended space programme.

Opening with Simon Singh’s captivating lecture on the enigma machine – with one actually in the room with us to demonstrate the complexity of the coding – and skipping on to the dulcet tones of scientific comic chanteuse Helen Arney, and then to the arresting remonstrations of Dr Ben Goldacre who soon had us railing against ‘broken medicine’, tonight encapsulated the absolute beauty and yearning for learning.

Then second half opened with a quick and engaging Q&A session with Dr Goldacre, Mr Rutherford and Professor Brian Cox, followed on with a particularly topical lecture from Professor Cox regarding the Higgs boson particle, a great deal of which went over my head but the gist of which was exciting.

The evening closed with a highly mischievous and fun set from atheist poster boy Tim Minchin, including the premier of a new festive tune and finishing with a rendition of ‘White Wine In The Sun’ with Professor Cox taking up position to accompany Minchin at the piano.

This was bursting to full with the joys and wonder of creative minds. A great big thank you to Robin Ince, who hosted the entire night and anchored a marvelous hot air balloon of science, entertainment and awe. Fabulous.

Concert Hall, Brighton Dome, 15 December 2011
Rating: ★★★★★
Victoria Nangle

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