Reviewed by: Fringefeed
Review by Joy Norton | 27 January 2023

It’s a Wednesday night at the Jazz Ellington and it is the place to be. The bar is flocked with patrons clambering for their gin, all setting the scene for a heaving “Postmodern Jukebox: Prohibition Party!”

As the patrons assemble with their beverages, the band make an entrance as crisp as their white collared shirts and ties, it is clear we are in good hands, they’ve done this before. Claire Fahie glides onto stage with an ethereal aura enhanced by the light-blue gown she had chosen which is perfectly fitting for the performance.

The ensemble is polished, have excellent timing and are clearly musically attuned to one another. The drummer feels almost like the maestro in the way he leads the initial tempo and the escalations throughout the songs.

This six piece band all take turns in shining and it is immediately evident that the horns are going to add pizzaz to the performance—the trumpet has ‘tude and the saxophone has soul. The saxophonist is multitalented and soon adds his voice to the vocals of the lead singer.

The double bassist cranks out a killer solo which transforms into the start of the song “ All about the Bass” I think we can all appreciate when an arrangement is witty like that. The composition of each of the songs is unique and with this talented group performing them they are popular songs as you have never heard them before adapted to vintage genres.

Claire Fahie is engaging and leads the ensemble’s interactions the entire band clearly love what they do, they are having a blast performing and the audience is loving seeing it. Throughout the show our songstress graciously highlights each of the performers and freely shares the attention of the audience, fortunately there is plenty to go around!

This band have mastered captivating people through their music, the crescendos are magnificent and the sound is clean - a shout out also to the sound production. There is seemingly effortless delivery of each of the songs they have chosen and they persuade the audience to submit to guilty pleasures;

  • “I Want it That Way” by the Backstreet Boys and
  • “Oops I Did it Again” by Brittany Spears.

The show is balanced like a perfect cocktail with song transitions happening seamlessly. “I’ll Be Watching You” by The Police is offered up to the audience and communicated beautifully by our pianist whose hands are clearly making magic happen. Claire pours emotion into the performance and is fearless in showing her connection with the song and it is clear that the audience is moved. Our multitalented saxophonist-turned singer then puts his clarinet to good use.

The performers continue to groove onstage throughout the show and there is high energy from beginning to end of the performance. ABBA’s “Dancing Queen” is a vibe and it has the crowd grooving along with the performers.

The band finish big with closing number “Are You Gonna be my Girl” and the audience showed their obvious appreciation with enthusiastic applause. This show is unmissable if you are a fan of Postmodern Jukebox or music in general, treat yourself to an absolutely stellar night out.