As The Puppini Sisters strut onto stage covered in pompoms and brimming with a sassy enthusiasm; the audience are hit with a burst of excitement. The candy pop coloured outfits seemed like the best simile for their catchy medleys and they burst straight into ‘Highlife’.
The Puppini Sisters sound beautiful. I’ve listened to them a fair bit over the past couple of years, not a touch on the 10 years they have been together, and had a pretty high expectation that they easily met. Singing in tandem and in their solo appearances at all times they were impressive. Emma Stone’s smoky jazz bar rendition of ‘Cheek to Cheek’ was a wonderful tribute to Sinatra and I loved that she performed with only the double bass to back her.
They performed a lot of songs from their new album ‘The High Life’ including a couple of my favourites; the catchy ‘We Love to Bebop’ and the ‘Rapper’s Delight Mash Up’ rendition that demonstrates their ease with taking something modern and changing it to have an older pop sound. The Andrew Sisters ‘Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy’ cover was also great and really highlighted the comfortable way that their voices complement each other. Again they added their unique style to the song, creating a version I have never heard before. But possibly my favourite, I am sure you can already tell it is difficult to choose, would have to be the ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’ encore. It was hilarious!
Music aside I loved the on stage banter that went on between The Puppini Sisters and their 3 piece band, each of whom really seemed to take it in their stride; even when in one case they were introduced as a Granma. Mr Kate Mullins (just kidding) had the best wit and really gave the fun on stage an inclusive feel. It was really fun to see such a great friendship group performing together and having such an excellent time. They clearly love what they do and I always find anyone who benefits from that, a joy to watch and speak with!
One thing I thought that was really missing was a ukulele solo, how awesome would that have been?! Otherwise, zero complaints. Audience participation was rife, as people were encouraged to guess the songs, how many were featured in a medley as well as vie for a double whisky. Local ladies, The Glamophones also took to the stage to join them in a rendition of Withering Heights and I hope to be able to catch them again at some festivals this summer. The Glamophones were sat near me in the audience and it was so cute to see them return, they were buzzing!
It would also be good to mention the wonderful support act, Hollie Stephenson. She has a real Amy Winehouse vibe, with a splash of reggae. One thing I would say is that she didn’t make much eye contact whilst singing, which I didn’t find very engaging however she was very sweet when she spoke between songs and you couldn’t fault her voice. I also loved that she writes her own songs and her ability as a songwriter, from what I was lucky enough to sample, is very strong indeed.
To say that The Puppini Sisters are an impressive harmony group, seems to really trivialise what they do and who they are as performers. Amazingly on top of some insane vocals they are as quick witted as they are entertaining. Go forth and see a touch of the High Life for a very joyous evening!
Want to hear more from The Puppini Sisters? Why not get your hands on In Retrospect for my interview with the wonderful Marcella Puppini.