London-born singer-songwriter Paloma Faith once worked as a magician’s assistant.
This quirky fact probably goes some way to explaining Paloma’s instinctive grasp of the fine art of performance. When you go to see Paloma live on stage, you don’t just get a gig, you get a piece of theatre.
We saw Paloma last week when her Fall to Grace tour came to Glasgow’s O2 Academy. Housed in a former movie theatre, the Academy is far and away my favourite spot for live music. The venue is intimate and the original 1930s art deco features seemed the perfect retro backdrop for an evening in Paloma’s company.
Poured into a duck egg blue latex gown, Paloma looked just as glam in real life as she does on the telly. She told us that she had a cold but it didn’t seem to impact on her vocals at all. That girl can certainly belt out a tune.
The set predominantly comprised material from Paloma’s new album, but songs from her debut album Do You Want the Truth or Something Beautiful? also got the nod. Highlights of the show included Just Be, Agony, Upside Down and her brilliant cover of INXS song Never Tear Us Apart.
Paloma, her band and backing singers provided great energy and atmosphere on stage. Hijinks ranged from dancing on the piano to taking an instagram pic of the crowd (cue audience frenzy). Actively encouraged to dance and sing along, this was the most fun I’ve had at a gig in quite some time.
I’ve read some reviews of the tour, presumably written by hard-core muso types. They tend to be a little sniffy about Ms Faith’s talents. But Paloma has been nominated for two Brit awards this year. She doesn’t think she’ll win, tipping Emeli Sandé instead. Nevertheless, for my money, Paloma Faith more than deserves the recognition she’s currently getting.
The warm-up act was singer Josephine, supported by her mate Steve on guitar. She’s supposed to be up-and-coming, so watch this space…