The Mayfield House Band at The Jolly Sailor, Southsea REVIEW: 'This band are tight'

Marlene Hill with the Mayfield House Band at The Jolly Sailor on July 26, 2019. Picture by Steve Spurgin
Marlene Hill with the Mayfield House Band at The Jolly Sailor on July 26, 2019. Picture by Steve Spurgin
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Predating the Drayton-based studio that takes their name by several years, The Mayfield House Band is a well-oiled multi-talented beast.

The collective features eight musicians – including a brass section – and at least three, sometimes four, vocalists on stage for any given song.

The Mayfield record label was created on an ethos of putting out any genre of music, as long as the quality of the song stands up – and its output varies from punk, to hip-hop, via soul and indie.

But the band is more focused stylistically – dedicated to bringing the funk to town, and at this gig, putting some soul back into into Southsea.

Led by label founder and keyboard player Dominic Elton, this band are tight. 

The show is to mark the launch of the collective’s third album, Lucky Soul – a compilation largely made up of singles released over the past year.

Four of the five vocalists on the album are here tonight, with Amba Tremain ably stepping in to deputise for Gloria Miller.

Marlene Hill, Chloe Josephine and Amba are on stage throughout, taking it in turn to show off some incredible vocals – then offering each other solid backing without overshadowing the lead.

Mary Red is called up on stage for her sublime song Heaven Sent, showing why comparisons to Amy Winehouse aren’t far off the mark.

And the sole male voice of the evening, Decosta Boyce lends his soulful pipes to a cover of SOUL’s This Time Around.

Chloe Josephine’s Soul Sister is another highpoint in an hour-long set packed with them.

The main set finishes with Hill taking lead on an older song, DLS, a track that could have been lifted straight from a 70s blaxploitation soundtrack. 

The inevitable encore is another slice of towering funk – Ready Set Go –  a song that could well be The Theme From Mayfield. The whole band really soar on this track, bringing proceeding to a suitably sweltering finale.