Audience Review Dec 22 Blog Header

An evening of 'dazzling' music in 'a venue to call their own' - An Audience Review

Friday, 23 December

Community Touring Scheme

Audience Review

LEON HUNT & JASON TITLEY at the Verney Institute, Pleasley - Saturday 3 December 2022

'It was an unpleasant, rainy night in Pleasley. The Verney faithful were pleased to be warm inside the venue they like to call their own. What awaited them would prove to be no everyday experience.

“I don’t think our musicians would be offended, if I referred to them as a couple of old hands”, I thought to myself, as the duo tuned up.

With a healthy disregard for showbiz convention, Leon (Banjo) and Jason (Guitar) took the stage and unleashed a fluid barrage of sheer musicality that nobody could have possibly anticipated.

'Jokey, affable, and relaxed, from the word go, the two trashed one preconception after another as they voyaged deeper and deeper into their hastily scribbled setlist.'

'One might be forgiven for assuming that, in a duo such as this, the guitarist would be there to provide chord progressions and rhythm, while the banjo player would look after all the lead work. Not so! These two expert instrumentalists were alternating, interweaving riffs, phrases, melodies, right from the off and throughout the whole performance.

'Effortlessly, Jason and Leon demonstrated a mastery of light and shade.'

Varying tone, volume and emotion, constantly, allowing mysterious notes to spiral and vaporise like magical whisps of smoke, never to be seen again, between the many, deliberately cultivated, spaces in each brilliantly rendered composition. Many of which are their own, I should add.'

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'Inter-song explanations are provided and welcome. So is that self-deprecating wit that we hear so often from our guests. “And that album is a million seller…” says Leon. “He’s got a million of them in his cellar!” finishes Jason. Heck! This pair even double-team the humour! Incentivising each other, with the promise of a visit to a ‘sensibly-priced’ establishment, they soar on towards the honestly wanted encore.

If you’re after hectoring, Appalachian, fire-on-the mountain, Deliverance-style twangery, these boys can give it to you, no problem, just like falling off a log. Better than anybody else from these Isles, I’d venture. But… there’s so much more to their music than that.

'Folk, Roots, Blues, Bluegrass, Jazz, all mashed up together in their own unique blend – stronger than a pint of Owd Rodger and more nourishing than a bowl of home-made stew!'

Two old hands? Nothing of the sort! Four young ones, I’d say. More speed than a Downhill Skier, more agility than an Olympic Gold Medal Gymnast. Vivid. Dazzling.'


We'd like to thank Chris for sharing his wonderful review.

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