Review: Bellowhead at Portsmouth Guildhall

Monk Misterioso

Journey into silence with the music of Thelonious Monk at Portsmouth Guildhall

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I thought I’d seen some pretty good bands live, and then I saw Bellowhead.

Admittedly, I didn’t know a lot about the 11-piece group, which has been at the forefront of folk music for nearly a decade. But that didn’t matter.

They’ve won seven Radio 2 Folk Awards, and their 2010 album Hedonism became the best-selling independent folk LP of all time. Their audience has even been known to break dancefloors in the past.

So would they be as good as the hype? Without a doubt.

Dramatic doesn’t even cover it. Ten members stood at the edge of the stage facing the audience, playing what seemed like dozens of instruments between them.

There was a Morris dancing couple in the corner, a little girl singing along with her dad and a Guildhall full of jumping, dancing and singing.

Go see them, anywhere.