N&N Festival, Hannah Williams & The Affirmations review: ‘Let loose it could be transcendent’

Hannah Williams & The Affirmations. Picture: Zoltan Nagy

Hannah Williams & The Affirmations. Picture: Zoltan Nagy - Credit: Zoltan Nagy

Hailed in the Norfolk and Norwich Festival programme as 'the next Amy Winehouse' and with her work sampled by Jay-Z, Hannah Williams arrived with a weight of expectation.

Together with backing band The Affirmations she certainly delivered a technically impressive performance: Williams has a powerful voice, and solid song-writing ability.

With a Saturday night crowd wanting to dance, this could have been an explosive gig - but it never quite popped. A few feedback shrieks aside the music was album-perfect, when it needed an edge to really set it alight.

While no-one would want Williams to ape Winehouse's personal bad habits, true divas have risk in their hearts and that frisson feeds in: surprising covers, the band breaking out and racing up tempo, that feeling that no one will ever see this again.

This was accomplished, skilled musicianship; let loose it could be transcendent.


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