Gig Review: Scott Bradlee's Postmodern Jukebox @ The Colston Hall
by Polly Hember.
Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox are a collective of talented musicians and performers, banded together by a passionate love for music and showmanship. Our brilliant MC Cunio invited the sold-out Colston Hall on a trip back in time, to a different time so we could party the night away. This perfectly encapsulates PMJ’s beauty and power; each live show seems to transport the audience somewhere different. Their shows are little microcosms of magnificent music and good times. It’s as if we’ve been invited into a secret speakeasy, hidden away and possessing seemingly infinite amounts of sassy, saucy energy.
With different musicians and singers joining together in new forms and lineups, catalysing on stage, exploding in a glittery frenzy of sequins and phenomenal performances. Each tour, then, feels beautifully unique despite the universality of a well-known and delightfully catchy cover.
Did I forget to mention they were a cover band? That’s probably because they’re like no other cover band you’ve ever heard of. They take contemporary songs and present them in a vintage, jazzy, brassy, big band style with all the energy and style of the roaring twenties.
"Post Modern Jukebox encapsulate passion and performance. It presents the brilliant power that music holds; to elate and to entertain."
Arranged by Scott Bradlee, the music is presented with brilliant showmanship and glamour. MC and singer (taking on MJ’s ‘Thriller’) Cunio introduced the set and the collective with the passion and presence of a ludic circus ringleader. Hilarious and hugely likable, he ran a smooth and sassy show with seamless transitions as singers came on and off stage invariably. The themselves musicians were sublime; the five-piece band comprised of bass (Adam Kubota was phenomenal), keys, sax, trombone and Martin Diller on drums. They were accompanied by four singers, PMJ superstars Jack Dani, Brielle von Hugel, newcomer Emma Hatton and crooning king Mario Jose.
'All About That Bass' by PMJ
Von Hugel and Jose’s duet of Ed Sheeran’s ‘Perfect’ was gloriously sweet and melted all hearts in the audience, a cheeky and jazzy rendition of ‘All About That Bass’, and a swinging and swooning cover of Miley Cyrus’ ‘We Can’t Stop’, were all highlights. One of the softer moments saw sax player Chloe Feorazo take centre stage and sing ‘No Surprises’. Her silky voice was almost heart-wrenchingly bittersweet as she tackled Radiohead’s emotive and tense lyrics.
Each song left you elated and smiling with ragtime glee. The cherry on top of an energetic and fiery evening was the incredibly suave tap danger Lee Howard, who danced upon a mic’ed board, adding brilliantly upbeat percussion to match Diller’s rhythm on drums. Encoring with Dani’s huge, big-band voice filling the entire Colston Hall with a spine-chillingly beautiful cover of Sia’s ‘Chandelier’, then the entire ensemble flooded the stage with ‘The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow’, they had the entire seated audience on their feet.
Scott Bradlee’s Post Modern Jukebox encapsulate passion and performance. It presents the brilliant power that music holds; to elate and to entertain. With some of the most talented musicians coming together to celebrate contemporary music in a style that is synonymous with exquisite excess and enjoyment, PMJ have an incredible ability to perform and to party.
Make sure to catch PMJ on the rest of their tour.