Thea Gilmore, Gig Review. The Music Rooms, Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *

It is always with a metaphorical warm embrace that audiences welcome back Thea Gilmore back into their live surroundings, regardless of whether it is with a full band or just on the stage with the talented Nigel Stonier, the welcome is positive and expectant, it is full of respect for the Oxfordshire raised musician and as the uncertainty of summer gives way to the chill of autumn, as the events unfold with dismay around the world, there is always the smile and the voice of a musically passionate woman to keep the home fires burning.

Liverpool is a second home for Thea Gilmore, her outlook and genuine style perhaps magnified by the same concern for life and compassion as reflected in the busy, deep waters of The Mersey, the river that gives life to the city that likes to remind Westminster that the U.K. does not stop at the Home Counties. Musically and personally both Ms. Gilmore and Liverpool fit well together and it is with no surprise that there are always people regretfully being turned away for the sold out performances when the artist comes to town.

On the back of a new album, the night in the Philharmonic Music Rooms was keenly anticipated, the stillness, the quiet was never in question for the Folk singer and her partner Mr. Stonier, these are, after all, words that demand attention, cords and the sly touch of deft fingers on a keyboard that require the deepest of thought and when the lyrics come over with silk tongued expression, then really there is nothing left to do but hand in your notice at work, for in love you will be and work has no place in that sentiment.

In songs such as Old Soul, Icarus Wind, So Fade To Black, the excellent God’s Got Nothing On You, Red, White and Black, The New Tin Drum, the beautiful cover of Credence Clearwater Revival’s Bad Moon Rising and the utterly beguiling and beautiful The War, with its clear message and dedication to the brave and publically much missed politician Jo Cox, Ms. Gilmore entranced the audience with polish, experience and strength of heart.

Autumn may have become, the world seems to be slipping into permanent crisis but when the voice resonates and is honest, then at least it is possible to believe that the answer to the oncoming dark is to throw more light upon it and in Thea Gilmore, the light shines brightly.

Ian D. Hall