Last Thursday Amy Hill invited us along to the launch of her debut album Place of Mind. On the door as we arrived everyone was given a copy of the album, and I was hoping this write up would be a review of both the album and the night. Unfortunately, every time I put the cd into my computer iTunes freezes up, which is why this blog post is both a little delayed, and a little incomplete in terms of what I was hoping it would include.
We arrived at The Brunswick a bit too late to see Jacko Hooper, but did catch most of Choice’s folky set, which involved a multi-instrumentalist using looping pedals alongside a live drummer. By this point, it was good to see that the venue was already full.
Amy Hill has been hosting the monthly Brighton Folk night for years. Every month she plays a song or two inbetween acts, solo and acoustic, but it’s a rare treat to see her playing a full set. On Thursday some songs were stripped back to just Amy and her guitar, but others were played with a full band who included Phil and Beth from The Galleons – regulars at Brighton Folk. This extra dimension shows an added depth that you wouldn’t see at one of her regular nights and is a welcome addition, elevating her sound above folky singer songwriter fare to something somewhere between Beth Orton and Sheryl Crow. Amy sung about life’s simple pleasures – friends, music, nature – and it’s safe to say that everyone in the room was sharing in that pleasure. At the end of the gig, after she had performed all of the tracks on the album, Amy was called back on stage an encore where she played a b-side from an earlier EP. Apparently it was her first ever encore, and it was obviously a very special moment – a fitting end to a great night.
The next Brighton Folk takes place this Sunday night at the Brunswick and features Mike Newsham, Donna Fullman and Sam Green.