Coming in out of the cold on this wet and stormy night, it is a surprise to find that the support is being provided by none other than the ground breaking seven-string guitar wizard Charlie Hunter. He’s with vocalist Lucy Woodward and Keita Ogawa on drums, giving us a lively set from a new album Music Music Music. Don’t look for the bass player. There isn’t one. It’s all Charlie.
Now here come the Snarkies, all ten of them. They’re heading towards the end of a seven-month international tour and they seem determined to make this night a special one, since it’s their first time in Belfast. And what a sound. Much of the material is from their outstanding new album Immigrance – their 13th. They’re no longer the new kids on the block but there’s no loss of the high energy, invention and brilliant playing that shot them to stardom. Among the soloists, trumpeter Mike Maher, Justin Stanton on trumpet and keyboards, Bob Reynolds on tenor and Jason Thomas on drums shine.
It’s a night for ‘heads’. I can see several well-known players in the crowd. At one point bassist and bandleader Michael League asks if there are any musicians in the house. Almost everybody shouts ‘yes!’ Photo: Viquipèdia.