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.