The intimacy and warmth of the Moon certainly suited Jim McShee very well, cruising through a lovely set of addictive songs that stick in your head for days to come, After a sound opening, Jim takes the crowd through “the most depressing song I’ve ever written”, which is a song filled with heart hitting lyrics and guitar melodies that are somehow emotionally beautiful and tender. The cold Jim had picked up from his performance at the poor weathered yet excellent Hippy Haze Festival on Easter weekend was nowhere to be seen tonight, as he sang his way through the set with his trademark raw, husky voice on perfect form. All that was missing from this fantastic blues encounter was a spitting jar as Mr McShee effortlessly picked and strummed his way through intelligently written tunes. Jim McShee has once again showed why he is such a well respected musician in Stoke-on-Trent with this performance, and a crying shame it would be if Coffin Nail E.P song Bloody Knuckle Blues were not to be used to one day soundtrack a film.
The illuminous fifties style microphone is the perfect touch to Hollie Vee and the Hubkaps set, witht he trio racing their way though a classic fifties blues rock performance. All three members of the band are fully absorbed in their set, working with great passion and enjoyment which clearly shows through in each song and spills over into the crowd, causing a brilliant fifties atmosphere. The band are seamless, creating perfect harmonies in very up-beat, enrgetic songs that use great dynamics to enhance the effect of each note played. You don’t even need to close your eyes to be carried away to 1950’s America- this band has somehow brought classic blues rock to 2012, and with an amazing display of twists and riffs, have the modernised sound of the 1950’s down to a T-Bird. Pardon the pun. Sneaking in well rehearsed covers, such as Brand New Cadillac from post-punk band The Clash, Hollie got the crowd on their feet with her great voice and passionate guitar playing. Taking an Amy Winehouse song and completely making it their own got more people up and dancing to the sound of Hollie Vee and the Hubkaps, and after a set filled with modesty, passion and enjoyment, Hollie Vee and the Hupkaps ended their performance on the very high note of Arctic Monkeys classic Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor. I know for sure I don’t look good on the dancefloor, but Hollie Vee and the Hupkaps most defiantely look good on the stage.