Aptly named for their mesmeric abilities, Hypnotic Brass Ensemble make their way through the crowd, forming up on stage into an impressive phalanx of brass. The Hare & Hounds is bursting at the seams and within mere seconds of the first note peeling out, is in a perpetual state of motion. A sensory assault of epic proportion commences, with an array of coloured lights deflected around the room by the gentle curve of horn and ‘bone, incendiary tracks Showtime and Delta stoke the crowd, with trumpeter Smoov introducing his siblings of blood and brass.
By the time HBE break into the soulful fan favourite Ballicki Bone every head is at break-neck nod intensity. Their sound is robust and warm, enveloping all those within sonic reach.
With W’s thrown up by the crowd, the mustering call of War whips the audience into a frenzy. The Bad Boys of Jazz continue their onslaught, displaying not only their prodigious skills as instrumentalists but also as lyricists. The late night cyphers and beatbox sessions from their youth breaking bread with the jazz inherent in their family gives rise to their formidable, acclaimed sound.
With what was already a jubilant mood, Kryptonite and Party Started ramp up the energy, HBE splitting the crowd in half with a mic stand with Moses-like aptitude. Their stage presence only matched by their tone and energy, HBE close the show having humbly shared “something that our parents gave to us to see through the concrete jungle.”
Words: Will Pace | Photos: Sam Wood