Jamnesty 3.0: The Jamazon @ Belgrave Music Hall 28/11/19

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Thursdays are generally uneventful, it’s not quite the weekend and Graham Norton won’t be on your TV for another whole day. But fear not, LUU’s very own Amnesty International were here to make sure that Leeds could keep grooving in the name of two amazing causes.

The build up to the event involved a myriad of posters and posts, and dressing lovely Belgrave to the nines with banners and balloons aplenty. With a lush line up of local Leeds musicians and a hearty crowd growing by the minute, it was time to raise those pounds and share some sounds.

Former president of the society George Taylor got things going under his alias Thursday Forever, his Northern twang enhancing the indie acoustic melodies that flowed from his guitar. As the audience grew and the beers got flowing, himehabu ramped things up a notch. The relatively new five piece band surpass the limitations of ‘genre’, blending ambient jazz and old school psych rock together to gift us the first of the three (!!) saxophone serenades the night had in store. 

Images by Andrea Loftus

As the bongos bid us farewell, the much anticipated indie pop/jazz band ZILAH took to the stage. The foursome’s dulcet croons and funk filled tunes created a palette of colourful melodies that exploded around the intimate venue, their chorus enveloping the captivated crowd as they played hit after hit. Front man Liam Jary’s husky honey vocals couldn’t be faulted, and the drums and bass perforated the melodies with punctuating pace that had a huddle of hips swaying as one. If it’s only to hear the Sax interlude in ‘Skyline’, ZILAH is a name you should definitely keep on your radar. Check them out on Spotify here.

Images by Andrea Loftus

After announcing the total was already an amazing £1000, the atmosphere was electric as Saint Doyle took to the stage accompanied by the LUU Sign Language Society to perform a collaborative and accessible rendition of Lana Del Rey’s ‘Change’. As the society’s president sang “Change is a powerful thing // People are powerful beings ”, it was a lyric to muse on as the audience stood arm to arm, united for a good cause and a good time, making a difference together.

Images by Andrea Loftus

“United for a good cause and a good time”

As DJ Xennex, known for his sweet sonic sets at Reading & Leeds and El Dorado, filled the final break with a myriad of mixes and unrivalled tunes, we waited impatiently for our headliner to emerge.

Cue Sgt.Lindenbaum, a collaborative electro-jazz project by Lindenbaum Modular, with George Purnell on drums and Ollie Sargent on sax. The trio become a foursome as the comedic but ever so ominous Keanu Reeves cutout lurked in the background, brooding along to their synthy compositions. With new wave sounds that could be the love child of the iconic Stranger Things Theme and the vine of that seal on sax (I know you’re intrigued), their sound was the finale Jamnesty deserved. The packed out room was equally entranced and energised by the musical melting pot they’d been blessed with this fine Thursday eve, and nobody was quite ready for it to end.

Jamnesty 3.0: The Jamazon was an undeniable success. From the music to the magic £1335 raised for WWF & Amnesty International, the third instalment of LUU Jamnesty was undeniably the best yet. Trust me when I say, the event is set to only get bigger and better in the new year with another Jamnesty teased for March 2020.

Andrea Loftus