A fine night of guitar based Blues/rock at the O2 in Islington. Two terrific live performers and about as different as they could get.

Danny Bryant has a new album out and in the eyes of most people in the Blues it will be in the top 5 of the year. Danny has always been a dynamic live performer but with this new material he is playing with even more heart and passion and his guitar playing is simply superb – there is no-one around who can rip out a heart-breaker of a solo like him.

The new band he has around him are excellent and in Stevie Watts he finally has a keyboard player who can really support his emotive and powerful playing. Alex Phillips is a fluid and understated bass player while Dave Raeburn has been around for many years and brings some real experience to the lineup. Watching the four of them onstage it really felt like a bunch of mates playing together – albeit very talented mates.

For me, the two real standout numbers were both from the new album – ‘Isolate’ is majestic with wide sweeping ranges in pace and power and ‘Sister Decline’ has a stomping riff that really cooks as a live number.
Add to the songs Danny’s pugnacious vocal style and the aggression he brings to his singing and you get one of the best live acts around Europe at the moment.

Steve Hill is a remarkable live performer and one of the best Blues guitarists and vocalists I’ve heard in a while. His slide style especially is superb and if you like traditional Blues/rock he is up there. His percussion seemed better than when I saw him supporting Wishbone Ash last year and all around he exudes confidence and class.

A great evening and a pleasure to see both acts warmly appreciated by the crowd,

Picture by Simon Green