by Zelia Bukhari
Hailing from the granite city itself, Hamlet are fresh and hot on the Aberdeen scene. On Friday the 18th of January, they released their debut album, Act One: Chip in the Wall, followed by a fitting party and sold out gig at the Blue Lamp.
The concept of Hamlet bloomed to life in 2016 when the five-piece collective met at Aberdeen University through all being members of the university jazz society. Though trained in traditional jazz music, and originally a cover band, they have taken their talent and skillfully molded it to fit a more contemporary and appealing aesthetic for their primary audience – students.
The buzz surrounding this Aberdonian band is well deserved as they bring a unique flare to jazz by incorporating afro-beat, traditional Scottish music, rock and hip-hop elements in a passionate yet inventive way. Act One: Chip in the Wall is completely composed of their own material, and the vibe is definitely one to get on board with.
One song to certainly check out is Switch States which features Jackill, a Scottish rapper who also made an appearance at the album launch performance at the Blue Lamp. Jackill brings an interesting dynamic to the song, pulling together an old school feel with the new school jazz. Chip In the Wall is also a great track, and word on the street is that they have also recorded a video for it which features locations such as Marischal Square, Tunnels, and Union Street, amongst others in central Aberdeen.
As the band’s appeal heightens from creating their own unique music, and playing exciting live shows, they will continue to shine a light on Aberdeen’s student jazz scene as they bend the norm. The support of the local community and the Blue Lamp will only continue to ensure Hamlet flourishes as their music progresses globally.