Just a week after we took over the Oxjam Stage at the Electric Picnic we were back at the Mercantile for the latest in our series of Faces shows, bringing you three fine new acts for the price of none. If we had expected Rebecca Collins to arrive in her acoustic guise we were in for a, very pleasant, surprise. Now backed by a rhythm section and herself playing electric, Collins is elegantly loud and quietly intense. Take into account that this is actually her first ever gig with this line-up and it’s a virtually flawless performance.
Paddy Hanna is exploring new avenues too, a world away from the band sound that he explored with Grand Pocket Orchestra. Playing solo, with a little bit of harmonica thrown in for good measure, his own unique take on Americana story telling benefits from a rich, emotive voice. It’s all a bit ragged around the edges – as you might expect from his previous work – but that just adds to the charm. In contrast to both, Otherkin feel very much like the complete package already. Restoring the volume levels after Hanna’s set, they attack their thirty minutes with admirable intensity and walk the line between accessibility and credibility with ease. Their tunes are as big as their sound and, clad all in black, they look like rock stars already. Unlike some, though, they have the music to back it up.
State Faces returns to the Mercantile on October 11th
Faces photographed for State by Kieran Frost.