Concert Review – Hipkiss with Patsy Gamble

Words by Ben Macnair
Photography by Dave Jones

Rock, blues, soul and jazz, were all on the menu when the saxophonist Patsy Gamble joined forces with the blues-rock band Hipkiss to play at Lichfield Guildhall on Sunday, October 27th.

With a hard-working drummer, bassist, keyboard player and ex Wishbone Ash guitarist Muddy Mannien, the band played a lot of hard-grooving rock, slow, soulful blues and some attractive covers of music from the sixties and seventies. With a sound that drew in 70’s funk influences, some of the music sounded like the soundtrack you might have found in an American police show, all swirling Hammond Organ, shuffle funk drums, slap bass and wah-wah infused rock guitar all playing their parts in the heady sonic mix.

With Patsy Gamble’s soaring Saxophone to the front of the mix, and her lively singing telling stories of love gone wrong, and love gone right, as well as more politically charged songs this was a very well-paced set. The exciting Respect Yourself, the reggae feel of Sunshine, or the brooding and slow The Bottle, were just some of the songs that gave plenty for the band, and the audience to get their teeth into.

Covers of Papa Was A Rolling Stone and set closer Hip To Be Square had very different arrangements, while pieces such as the instrumental Difficult, or the love song of Northern Lights showed the different soundscapes that the talented five piece were able to create in the live environment. A crowd-pleasing version of Stevie Wonder’s I Wish closed the concert.

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