Posted by Callum Fitzpatrick.
Reviewed on 29th September 2006.
Live at Mine on Monday, 25th September 2006
The Meters, Conny Price, Jimmy Smith. So much brilliant instrumental Jazz Funk has passed through my ears that I find it hard to be impressed in recent times, but I was intrigued to see why a band that had only been around three years (with many line-up changes I may add) had been getting their performance at Edinburgh Fringe Festival hailed as: "highly energetic" and "powerful and absorbing."
I arrived into Leeds Uni's Mine Bar to a quite unsettling atmosphere, with a tense omnipresence about the place. It turns out that there was a mix-up and the majority of the bands that were due to play the monthly jazz-funk night: 'Blowout' hadn't turned up. It was already quarter past 9 and the punters were thirsty for live music. People were starting to get impatient and Add9 were the only band on the bill.
They arrive on stage with a choice, do they a) go out and play their set as they had planned, or do they b) attempt to fill the void that has been left as a result of the mix up? Opting for option b is a risk for even the greatest of bands, but I'm quite sure that they pulled it off.
Their set gets underway, it's not bad, not bad at all; they manage to fuse jazz, soul, blues, funk and rock and they really looked like they were enjoying themselves, something which I think connected with the audience. Unlike before, there is a really good atmosphere in the place and I can't help but think that it's because of something that Add9 did tonight.
It is revealed that, along with their charm and bubbly smiles, comes some great instrumentation and serious musicianship. No wonder some of the band are teachers themselves. 'Boonkadinkabom-bom-bah' at first sounds like a 70's TV show theme, but is a really jazzy piece, with some good melody. Audience favourite: 'Bleeeurgh' goes down a treat, getting everybody's hips swaying. They continue this trend popping out some catchy tracks that got even the most cynical and boring looking student dancing. And those that did decide to pay little attention to the 8 piece were surprised when their ears pricked up and yes, they had heard right; Beyonce's 'Crazy in Love' was imbedded in one of Add9's songs.
All in all Add9's flawless set proved tonight that Leeds doesn't just have to be full of sweaty new wave indie guitar bands; which, let's be honest, are starting to become a bit tiresome. It still has its cool jazz-funk scene and these guys are proof that some bands can play it at its best.