Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Gig Review - Emma Louise (25/01/13)





 Emma Louise (25/01/13)
Live at The Powerhouse, Brisbane
by Jo Michelmore


Considering Matt and I didn’t know we were going to see Emma Louise two hours before we saw her last Friday night, with surprise tickets in hand we were happy to battle the rain and wind through the streets of New Farm to The Powerhouse, to see what we hoped was going to be a beautiful experience. We weren’t disappointed. 

Having seen her only 6 months ago at the Black Bear Lodge, I wasn’t sure what to expect from this gig. Six months ago she was a shy, cute girl; a little unsure of herself and completely charming in her own humble way. That same girl was present on Friday night, but she was also a girl confident in her own ability, a girl who is clearly growing as an artist and finding her way in her own creative process as well as the crazy world of the music industry.

Arriving on stage with her band members, it would be easy for her to get lost amongst the sound, the presence of other instruments and voices, but that incredibly strong vocal coming from that petite frame is mesmerising. Opening with an audience pleaser, ‘Boy’ she immediately had the room in the palm of her hand, ready to take them on a journey of new and old, which is exactly what she did. Moving through tracks from her new album, as well as some familiar songs, she introduced her songs one by one, letting them settle amongst her audience to take away and ponder what had been heard. Amongst her new songs; ‘Cages’ was surprisingly dark, ‘Two Mirrors’ and ‘Atlas Eyes’ were a treat, but it wasn’t until her band left the stage that the Emma Louise I have come to love returns, with only her guitar and her voice ready to take us on a journey. ‘1000 Sundowns’ is as spine tingling now was it was the first time I heard it, six months ago. Last time, Matt and I were dumbfounded, speechless at its beauty. This time, the same feeling, combined with a comforting feeling of familiarity, I was again brought to tears at such powerful song writing. Just beautiful.  


 



Of course, her crowd pleaser ‘Jungle’ bought the audience to the….edges of their seats and of course, it was awesome, but it wasn't until Emma and her friend and bandmate Hannah returned to the stage for an encore that I experienced what I think is her strength. Emma Louise's ability to tell a story with just her and her voice is phenomenal, this time the song ‘Temporary Friend’. It didn’t make the cut for the album, but for me, this is the real Emma Louise I love. While her new Bjork/Bat For Lashes/Ellie Goulding vibe suits her perfectly, her new styling as cute as it is edgy; it’s the heartfelt, beautiful, open and bare, songwriter I adore, her soul on the line is special and one of the reasons her talent is so incredible. While her new material is great and I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of her new album, this is the Emma Louise I hope doesn’t get lost as her popularity rises. 






Considering Matt and I had no idea what to expect six months ago when we first experienced Emma Louise live, it’s a testament to her talent that we both left the Powerhouse on Friday night impatiently awaiting the arrival of her first full length album later this year. It’s also a testament to the power of live music that we started as interested onlookers six months ago and left as definite fans both times we have seen her. Awating the next time she plays....

1 comment:

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