[Gig Review] Havvk deliver 'moving' show @ Servant Jazz Quarters

Photo Credit: @JonMoPhotography/Jon Mo

Written by Aurora Krieger 

Havvk’s show at Servant Jazz Quarters  (6th Dec) is an intimate, cheerful but also moving experience.

Whilst the band are currently living in Berlin, they formed in London in 2014 and playing at the Servant Jazz Quarters is a sort of home-coming experience for them. Inevitably, a lot of friends seem to gather among a very supportive audience.

Being the last of the three bands that perform that night (Rookes, After London), they surge up the energy level in the small room as they start to play their first song Once Told. This powerful tune set the scene for the first part of their set, which consists of a series of Havvk’s newer songs (Can’t Explain, Glass, Keeps Me Out). The mystical mood carried in each song is artfully led from one to another using pre-recorded interludes, sounding as abstract as a ticking clock in the distance or a distorted buzzing noise.

In comparison to the second part of their set in which they perform a couple of their earlier songs, Havvk’s new songs clearly stand out – not only because they had the audience enthusiastically singing and swinging along. It appears that in their more recent releases, they accomplish to develop a more unique and distinguishable style, relatable to shoegaze which has been an inspiration in the song-writing process.

Mixing repeating guitar riffs with thrusting beats, strong reverb and Julie’s heavily melodic vocals – which can both become ethereal meditation or a perky staccato – into the potion, they create an intoxicating balance that is both impelling and easing at the same time.

With lyrics addressing topics as strong as inequality, gender-preconceptions, and generalisations faced by different social groups, it would have been interesting to have heard more about the inspiration behind some of their songs or in which context they were written. 

Halfway through their set though, Havvk not only share their excitement about launching their new enticing single Always The Same, but also take the moment to announce their debut album coming up in 2019.

The gig almost ends as abruptly as it starts and the audiences’ thirst for more is noticeably remarkable. Still being in their formative years, the band experienced some technical issues during their performance, which are handled in calm and professional manner. And due to the addictive quality of their songs, those little stumbles are quickly forgiven.

All in all, Havvk demonstrate their high musical potential and succeed in spreading the excitement about their album release next year. With music as strong as in their recent releases, this will be highly anticipated.