They say that overnight success takes about ten years. Which in the case of last night’s gig at the Wedgewood Rooms demonstrated two acts that are on fire right now, having honed their stagecraft and built a loyal following judging by the packed house; Portsmouth’s very own Jerry Williams, supporting lively Leigh rockers The Lottery Winners.
Singer-songwriter Jerry opened the evening, with all the sublime harmonies we have come to expect, armed with only her trusty Fender, and everyday observations of love, life and suburbia. Standout tracks included hillibilly ditty Left and Right, a brilliant Tom Jones ensemble of She’s a Lady / Sexbomb and closing her set with sage advice to Grab Life.
By the time tour de force frontman Thom Rylance tore onto the stage, it was clear the crowd were putty in his hands. Pompey have become their adoptive second home, having played in the last year to no less than Victorious Festival, Virgin cruises and more recently at Guildhall Studio launching their second album “Something to Leave the House For”.
The banging set and banter combined to deliver a 90-minute hit of adrenaline anthems, that took me right back to the Nineties. Which is never a bad thing when you have Robert Lally’s take on Robbie William’s Angels or a slip into Housemartin’s Caravan of Love. It’s no surprise then that they have been touring with everyone from Shed Seven to Sleeper.
The banging set and banter combined to deliver a 90-minute hit of adrenaline anthems, that took me right back to the Nineties.
But it’s their own music that really delivers on simple addictive hooks and ‘punch the air moments’ captured in songs like Meaning of Life, Headlock and Much Better. And the vocals don’t disappoint either; Katie Lloyd’s mean bass guitar contrasts well with her mellow vibes of Sunshine, while Joe Singleton’s pounding drums keep the crowd bouncing on Little Things. By the time they close the set with singalong favourites Start Again & 21 there is no way any of us “wanna go home.”
They simply are one of the most exciting bands to watch live for sheer entertainment value. Catch them if you can them supporting Embrace later in the year.