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Thursday October 19th, 2023 Oxford Art Factory


There is a palpable excitement about the imminent release of ‘Heartbeat Highway' , the 4th album by Cannons ( a trio based in Los Angelos) set to be released Nov 10 2023.

The band has released 4 singles to date from this pending release, so it was with much excitement and anticipation that we headed down to the Oxford Art Factory on a Thursday night.

Lead by Michelle Joy (vocals) and supported by Ryan Clapham (guitars) & Ben Hilzinger (drums), Cannons didn’t disappoint. With "Agro” resting on the drum kit in pole position raring to go, we knew that we were in for a treat. Sydney, being the last stop on their 2 month headlining tour, was ready to party.

From the opening notes, Cannons exude sophistication and class. Having honed their craft for 10 years now, Cannons are completely comfortable in the live music performance space and Michelle had the crowd in the palm of her hand from the get go. Clearly excited about the new albums release, she told us stories of origin about some of the songs and played us for the first time a new song “Sweeter’’ from Heartbeat Highway . “You may find this person on another road in this lifetime, when the time is right, maybe in a different lifetime, or maybe in a dream and that all sounds pretty nice to me. So that is what this song is about and it’s called Sweeter ”

For the next hour we were treated to a night of infectious funk infused smooth sassy songs delivered with real sultry swagger as the crowd lapped up every moment. These songs make you feel good and you can’t but help tap your feet and move your body. Cannons gift is that their music has space to breath and almost has a reggae rhythm and feel at times with Michelle’s vocals allowed to fill the space without being overpowered by instrumentation. Ryan’s guitar playing is exceptional and a real pleasure to listen to.

Crowd favourites included "Bad Tattoo" , “Desire’, “ Loving You, “Hurricane” and “Fire for You” with a 2 song encore that the crowd didn’t want to end. A thoroughly joyous experience from a band on the rise. Expect big things from this dynamic trio.

© Tania Smith Photography All rights reserved


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