Category Archives: Live

The Beat, Gig Review. The Olympia, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *

The beat remains important, without it, without that palpitation in the chest, the rhythm in the soul and the expectation of the overwhelming passion for life, then what is the point of existence, it would just come down to a series of 0 and 1s, to the coldness of science and the drudgery of only letting off steam in a calculated, disciplined way. The beat, that recurring, rhythmic resonating in each of us if we listen closely, that is the sound of being alive and passionate. It is sound that The Beat remember and offer with charm and dexterity of purpose and it is still the one that snaps the fingers and makes the heart jump for joy.

Kate Rusby, Gig Review. Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10

Christmas means something different to everybody, whether they celebrate it or not, whether it is in the joy of family, togetherness, being with friends, surrounded by strangers but with a common love in which to bond, or in just the thought of a set of songs that grab their attention and make the time of year more thoughtful, reflective, even for some bearable. Music is what binds all when the first drops of snow hit the ground and the carol singers can be found with lamps in hand, a weapon against the darkness of the northern sky.

Paul Heaton And Jacqui Abbott, Gig Review. Echo Arena, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10

It could be Rotterdam, Rome or anywhere but as December’s cruel thoughts turn to the end of the year, as the office parties began to stack up and the songs from karaoke machines began to rotate on mass, there is in amongst the freeze to come the knowledge that it is Liverpool that Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott once again find themselves in and producing a night of music in which to dance and reflect the night away.

Queen + Adam Lambert, Gig Review. Echo Arena, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * * *

Adam Lambert at the Echo Arena, Liverpool. November 2017. Photograph by Ian D. Hall.

The entrance tickets would have been smouldering away in the pockets of the audience for months, they would have been hidden in secret draws and in the realms of closets, opened every so often just to make sure they were still there, not squirreled away by jealous borrowers or fanatical fans who had not been able to secure a ticket of their own. On a night which temptation was possible, in which the heat of the performance would have burst into raptures of flames; Queen and Adam Lambert made good on a long standing unspoken promise and came to Liverpool to raise the roof.

Hazel O’ Connor, Gig Review. Epstein Theatre, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *

Time, as noted by the singer and the audience, is a peculiar animal, it can snarl all it wants, it can find ways to give new perspective to eras in which some saw the end of a kind of order and were frightened by the prospect and in which other relished and rubbed their hands in glee as the future and bold vision opened up before them.

Alison Moyet, Gig Review. Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * * *

To make the audience focus completely on the drama unfolding before them takes consummate skill, a deftness of spirit, the potency of allure and the mystery, the sense of living through a moment so tangible that it seems all the functions of the human body stop what they are doing and just sit in the honour of the spectacle; to focus so much that you cannot hear a crowd breathe during a song and then applaud like a series of rolling thunderstorms across an empty desert, that is the absolute found.

Billy Bragg, Gig Review. Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10

Everything comes full circle and in some cases it is with anger, the rage and resentment that what you first fought and rallied against in your younger days, somehow becomes the very political ideal that you have to fight and lyrically wrestle with once again; to see in your life time the hatred that others wear like lounge suits and serious ties return is to know that the battle against tyranny and vile fascism is an ongoing struggle but one that must always, with the keen eye of vigilance, be waged.

Seán McGowan, Gig Review. Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *

Port cities have this unnerving ability in which to produce musicians which captivate the love of vocabulary and language; perhaps it comes down to the use of words on the docks, the different ways of having a conversation between two people from places which have nothing in common but the sea that breathes between them. Whatever the answer may be, some who hear the words somehow manage to make new worlds out of it and spread that verbal onslaught towards those willing to listen and take heed.

Ricky Ross, Gig Review. Capstone Theatre, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * * *

Ricky Ross at the Capstone Theatre, Liverpool. November 2017. Photograph used with kind permission by David Munn Photography.

It seems a strange departure when you first see the piano on the stage at the Capstone Theatre, the audience knows full well it is not going to be a performance in which the roof of the Echo Arena would shake and feel the storming pull of wave after wave of pop hits and the shake of expectation of Deacon Blue favourites that have become a staple on the Liverpool calendar since the venue opened. However, when it comes to Ricky Ross, almost anything is possible and the Capstone Theatre roof must have been concerned for the future of its position.

Anthony D’ Amato, Gig Review. Capstone Theatre, Liverpool.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *

Anthony D’ Amato at the Capstone Theatre, Liverpool. November 2017. Photograph used with kind permission by David Munn Photography.

Even today in the ease of travelling across oceans and different time zones, there is something distinctly admirable about letting go of the comfortable and the secure and opening yourself up to the possibility of the unknown and possibly uncharted. To leave one’s home town behind, to venture into the space between love and acceptance is a challenge, no matter how old, no matter how experienced; it is still one that marks you out as having the chops to spread your word far and wide.