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  • Writer's pictureMatt Sharp


Medium Build showcases his brilliance at Hoxton Hall

On Wednesday night, the characterful Hoxton Hall welcomed the talents of US singer/songwriter Medium Build. The Alaskan resident has spent the last two weeks on tour with Holly Humberstone, before doing a series of shows up in the Scottish Highlands. Afterwards, he set his sights on the capital for an incredibly intimate display, despite the large crowd present. If he wasn’t the remarkable musician that he is, then his personality would’ve completely stolen the show. However, the enormity of his artistry remained the crowning glory of the evening.

The night was kicked off with the sounds of a Glasgow-based artist called Quiet Man, who provided impressive vocals accompanied only by his keyboard. The story of how Quiet Man came to be the support act for this show was a brilliant tale, told in full by Medium Build later in the night when he brought Quiet Man back on to play keys with him. The pair had only met when Medium was up in Glasgow on tour, and a week later, here he was with the opportunity to support him in London. Quiet Man gave an impassioned performance, with the capable stage presence to match. For me, his stand-out song was ‘Butterflies’, a lovely song about his father.

Then it was time for Medium Build, who appeared on stage and immediately showed his personality. Wearing what looked a lot like running gear, Medium quickly won over the crowd with his humour. Commenting on the English tendency to dress as cool as possible, and him going against the grain with his casual fit. I came to the show expecting incredible music, but what I was not prepared for was the man’s brilliant humour and crowd interaction. Seriously, if he ever hangs up his guitar, he could walk straight into stand-up with a tight 20-minute set off the cuff. I can’t remember ever laughing that much at an artist’s in-between-song stories. Very likeable and disarming, Medium then ventured into his first song of the night, ‘Gimme Back My Soul’.

Accompanied only by his guitar, Medium immediately showed why he is so beloved. With his powerful vocals and emotion-packed delivery, he gathered the room’s attention instantly. He is the kind of artist who gives his all to every song. In the sense that, when he performs, he sings with his whole body, the delivery of the vocal taking up his entire being. It makes him a performer you cannot take your eyes off.

He finished the opening number and delved into another funny anecdote focusing mostly on Huel drinks. Again, hugely funny. The set promptly arrived at the first song off his new album, ‘Country’, which is out next week. ‘Beach Chair’ kicks off the album wonderfully. I’m beyond excited for when this becomes available everywhere.

Following it up were recently released singles, ‘In My Room’ and ‘Crying Over U’, both feeling special in this live setting. Hoxton Hall is quite a unique venue, in its narrow, three-story configuration. It proved the perfect space for Medium Build to play through his new album.

The evening continued with brilliant song after brilliant song, complete with funny, as well as more serious, anecdotes sandwiched in-between. A particular gift of Medium Build is the ability to go from telling a funny story, to singing about the most personal things imaginable. It provided a comforting atmosphere. The artist gives so much in

his music, putting the crowd in a state of awe and admiration.

In addition to the album, he gave an exquisite cover of one of Holly Humberstone’s songs, paying tribute to the brilliance of the young artist. Medium admitted to being greatly under-practiced for this show, playing many songs live for the very first time on the night. It took nothing away from his performance of them. On the contrary, it added humanity when he shouted “Uhh, line?!”, to his crew off-stage to let him know how his song began. It all added to the haphazard spirit of the evening, with Medium needing no assistance whatsoever when it came to his brilliant vocal performances.

The latter stages of the album provided some more sombre offerings that had the crowd transfixed by their emotional quality. There’s a quintessential country song on the B-side of the album which was definitely a highlight. Following the re-introduction of Quiet Man and the story of their meeting, the night was concluded with fan-favourite ‘Cuz Of U’.

This was particularly special. Medium belted out the lyrics to this heartfelt song, and the crowd joined him. For the last few rounds of the hook, the whole room sang “Everything I am today, It’s cuz of u, cuz of u, cuz of u”, completely acapella.

Goosebumps moment.

And with that, the evening was finished. Medium Build stood-out to me as a very impressive vocalist, with a powerful, emotive voice. His performance style of giving every track his all was truly mesmerising. His stage presence and hilarious stories were an unexpected, and very welcome bonus. Next time the opportunity to see Medium Build comes around, I will definitely be attending. An all-round exceptional show at Hoxton Hall.



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