Seth Lakeman performing his The Well Worn Path Tour at Southwell Minster Nottinghamshire on Monday 25th March 2019

Images and Review by Kevin Cooper

Seth Lakeman is currently on a tour of some of the country’s most beautiful cathedrals and theatres to promote his latest album, The Well Worn Path, and with him having played across the globe with Robert Plant, the chance to see him perform last night in such intimate surroundings as Southwell Minster was indeed a very rare one.

With his winning combination of dynamic musicianship, infectious on stage energy and clean cut vocal delivery, he immediately had this packed Minster in the palm of his hand. Touring with three very talented musicians, he delivered a superb performance that was both touching and raucous.

And with Kit Hawes on guitar, Ben Nichols on double bass and completing the quartet, Evan Jenkins on drums, the evening started with new song, Bright Smile which instantly showcased Hawes fabulous guitar playing before they followed with the faster paced Take No Rogues which announced just how well practiced and tight this band are.

Taking the audience on a thrilling but thoroughly modern folk rock romp, he delivered his new material like Fitzsimmon’s Fight and The Gloaming as well as highlights from across his now considerable back catalogue, like the traditional and self composed Poor Man’s Heaven and Solomon Browne.

The interplay between Lakeman and Hawes was a sight to see, and with Nichols’ bass playing producing a deep powerful sound, and Jenkin’s drumming lifting the songs so that they soared around the Minster, they delivered a performance that displayed their flawless ability to switch and swerve between unrelenting racing beats and mellow delicate sounds on the likes of These Four Walls, The White Hare and The Colliers.

Throughout the course of the evening Lakeman played several different guitars and two different fiddles and simply mesmerised with not just the speed at which he played but also with the precision and musicality that set the pulse racing, as this appreciative audience tried to keep up.

He finished the main set with a foot stomping rendition of Kitty Jay which saw such intense fiddle playing from Lakeman that it was surprising that it made it through the song, let alone the set. For the encore there was another crowd pleaser, Drink ‘Till I’m Dry before he finished the evening with Race To Be King which started with Nichols playing the distinctive introduction. With the crowd all clapping along and Lakeman’s fiddle soaring joyously over the top, it had been a fine ending to an excellent evening of music.