My review [£] of the folkies’ final London concert:
Some purists may have their misgivings, but there’s no question that in their dozen years together, the quirky, irreverent supergroup have brought traditional music to a fresh new demographic. Eager to dust down venerable material, they are Vaughan Williams with amps and attitude.There is a drawback to that barnstorming spirit though. Apart from the pensive opening version of Jacques Brel’s “Amsterdam” and the melancholy strains of “Captain Wedderburn”, there were no moments of respite in this set. And those brash, primary colour arrangements, full of bustling brass and anchored by Pete Flood’s thunderclap drumming can be the concert equivalent of the relentless Dolby Surround Sound ads that pin you to your seat in the cinema. Bellowhead overflows with unconventional talent, but there isn’t always room for subtlety when the dial is turned up to eleven.