Lime Wood is the flagship hotel in a chain of ‘Pig’ boutique hotels across Hampshire and the south west. Strong supporters of live music, they put on a series of daylong festivals during the summer under the Smoked & Uncut banner.

The events typically feature fairly mainstrain artists supported with local talent though occasionally the line-up is more eclectic (we have previously seen Ed Harcourt and Teleman at a previous event). Today’s headline promised a memory lane trip with Razorlight, with another favourite Rae Morris on the bill.

Highly inclusive and provides an excellent opportunity for families to enjoy a festival vibe. At £40 the ticket price represents fair value, but given no food or drink could be taken onto the site the total cost of a family day out could easily mount up. All food and drink purchases were via a token system, £5 each. Glamping is available but seemed to be priced in line with the hotel rooms, so definitely not for those on a limited budget.

The bands played on a Main Stage and ‘The Dog House’ tent and performances were dovetailed timewise so while many relaxed enjoying the sunshine, those of us who wanted to max out on music were able to do so (alongside multiple visits to the beer bar for the very pleasant Otter Ale).

A well organised day and hats off to venues like this for delivering a festival experience.

And so to the bands we saw:

Ben Goddard
Summery pop songs under a suitable scorching sun, supported by his excellently named band ‘Sons Of Indigo’.

John Burke
Included a cover of ‘I Wanna Be Like You’, appealing to the family-friendly crowd. Metallica it wasn’t.

Hush Moss
Five-piece from Berlin. Average White Band/BadBadNotGood mash-up. Mostly laid back jazzy sounds. Had it been later in the day, may have got a greater number of people dancing which it deserved

Aniya Savage
Delicately crafted songs from this solo singer/guitarist. Sadly chatter, shade in the tent and kids playing was higher up most people’s agenda than listening, Aniya would not be out of place on the EOTR Tipi Stage. Gave a brief insight into ‘courageous’ songwriting.... from the French ‘cour’. Her songs we’re certainly heartfelt

Calum Lintott
Local Southampton-based artiste. A late substitute on the bill. Filled the tent with his songs which included a rendition of ‘Three Lions’, highly appropriate as England were at that very moment engaged in the meaningless 3rd Place World Cup play-off. His set included many of his usual songs with homespun references but he got the kids going in pied-piper style with the ‘Floss Song’

From Leeds. 2018’s Sundara Karma? Their anthemic songs are much better live than on record. Ones to watch.

Jack Francis
With accompaniment on steel guitar, giving a deep soulful feel to his excellent songs

Rae Morris
Her 2018 album ‘Someone Out There’ is first rate. Sadly no band with her today so with synthesised beats and backing, this felt more like (I’m guessing a bit here!) what an Ariadne Grande performance would be like. But lovely renditions at the piano of the album title track and a truncated ‘Don’t Go’ from her first album. Resuming the beat-backed songs, it was wonderful to see so many kiddies truly enjoying the set. And when Rae lost her shades she revealed orange eye-shadow matching her trainers. Truly a full performance from this wonderful artist.

Hannah Jane Lewis
A Rae Morris soundalike - quite likely every bit as good but didn’t have the stage, sound or lighting

In the eyes of certain commentators, recent pop music history places this band as wannabes who never quite struck the pulse of the early noughties indie revolution; principally as a result of lead-man Johnny Borrell’s somewhat arrogant detachment. But were Razorlight to be judged purely on musical grounds there is a strong case for putting them alongside other guitar heavyweights. I base this view principally on their 2004 debut album ‘Up All Night’, 49 minutes of edgey, personal and exciting songs, when peer bands of that moment were putting out albums little more than half that length. Today’s headline set was comprised mainly of songs from their second album ‘Razorlight’ which includes some better known numbers (In The Morning, America). Highlights were ‘LA Waltz’ and, from the debut alum ‘Stumble And Fall’. An energetic performance from a band that still has the golden touch.


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