|Photography: Cordell Sanders|
Live at The Tivoli, Brisbane.
Supported by: Sam Lawrence and Daniel Merriweather.
"And I've got a lot to lose, you've got a lot to prove, I've got a lot to risk, you know I can't afford to miss." As the opening lines of 'Limbo' filled The Tivoli to rapturous applause, I knew that Kimbra was going to deliver a performance that would make the night one to remember. One would assume those opening lyrics were quite telling. A week ahead of the US release of her debut album, Vows, the weight on Kimbra's shoulders to prove herself must be quite intense. If she's under any pressure, she certainly wasn't showing it on Tuesday night. On the contrary, Kimbra came onto the stage full of life and ready to raise The Tivoli's roof with the best live performance I've had the pleasure of seeing in 2012. From beginning to end, Kimbra and her amazing technicolour band delivered outstanding renditions of tracks from Vows and beyond.
There wasn't a single misstep throughout the evening. Bouncing through 'Good Intent,' 'Settle Down' and 'Two Way Street,' Kimbra had the crowd marveling at the power of her voice (incredible live) and the boundless energy both her and the band were exuding. As it was on the album, 'Old Flame' proved to be just as stunning live. Nope, not as stunning... even more so. I'm pretty sure everyone in the room collectively dropped their jaws in awe at how much vocal control Kimbra was showcasing. The set list order was laid out perfectly. After the slowed down beauty of 'Old Flame,' the band launched into the 'so-good-it-makes-you-want-to-jump-and-dance' Converse track, 'Warrior.' Who needs Mark Foster? Not Kimbra. But you already knew that.
Words don't do justice to how good 'Call Me' was live. Luckily I don't have to sum it up, check out the video above and see for yourself! 'Plain Gold Ring' was exceptionally classy. Somewhere out there, Nina Simone is smiling. Surprisingly, 'Withdraw' was my favourite song of the night. It's not that I didn't like it before, but seriously. Wow. Just wow. This was a knockout live and I haven't been able to stop listening to it since. The visual of Kimbra standing all beautiful looking in her red flowered dress, "snow" falling around her and blowing into the crowd as 'Withdraw' came to a close... that will stay with me for a long, long time. To finish the pre-encore set, we were treated to new track 'Come Into My Head.' Clearly being the 2011 It's My Kind of Scene 'Woman of the Year' wasn't good enough for Kimbra. She's going to make a claim for the 2012 title with this song. It's a world of fun and shows just how much Kimbra has evolved in such a short span of time.
The inevitable encore that followed just kept the good times rolling. Sam Lawrence took to the stage for the 'Wandering Limbs' duet. Much like 'Withdraw' I found myself loving the live performance more than I ever loved it on the album. 'Cameo Lover' or, "that cameo song," (thanks, girl behind Jo) sent the crowd home happy and covered in rainbow confetti. I wasn't just happy... I was astounded, impressed, in awe and even though I didn't think it was possible, I was even more in love with Kimbra Johnson than ever before. I can't wait to see her live again!