Does Lianne La Havas still have that magical charm which led us to initially fall in love with her? Of course she does! Bringing a welcome light to Bristol on yet another dismal October evening exactly one year to the day since her milestone breakthrough set on Jools Holland. Last night La Havas continued her first UK headline tour in support of the critically acclaimed debut album Is Your Love Big Enough?
Support came from Oxford’s young Lewis Watson, who went down notably well amongst the female members of the crowd. Watson played through his acoustic material charismatically, suiting the overall mood.
La Havas opened the set on her own, plucking away blissfully the opening guitar intro of No Room For Doubt with that individual innocent playing style, really emphasizing key notes but in a delicate manner. The crowd stood completely silent absorbing the raw talent. The track was nailed.
The four piece band arrived on stage and swept into the track Au Cinema with no immediate contrast. That’s the beautiful thing about La Havas’ band, they compliment her sound softly and subtly, yet still manage to give it that extra push.
Supping orange juice and water throughout her set Lianne chuckled “doctors orders are to keep hydrated!” And she gave a beaming smile with a big thumbs up. It was her 4th gig since leaving hospital. It is this charming naivety that give her live shows a very special feel. It’s evident she has a great sense of humour.
The awesome cover of Jill Scott’s, He Loves Me left the Bristol crowd in some kind of trance as they managed to screw up the Forget singalong taking four measly attempts to finally raise their voices loud enough. Until the peachy distorted guitar jangle soon came in and opened a first class performance of the track.
Highlights from the night included Elusive in which La Havas’ soul touching vocals were enough to make your hairs stand up. The track Gone also stood out, which details the next chapter in Lianne’s life after parting from her ex. During these tracks she went all out as every bit of emotion appeared to be poured into the drastically touching songs.
After roars from the crowd the expected encore included Age, the very song she played a year ago on Jools Holland. This bought smiles all around; particularly when the lyrics were adapted to suit the Bristol audience. As ever she took her usual photographs of the crowd, which demonstrated her appreciation for her recent success.
Remember to get yourselves to a Lianne La Havas gig as soon as possible! While she continues to play these intimate gigs, nominated for the annual Mercury Prize Award 2012, we expect very big things. Catch the latest tour dates by clicking through this link to her website. http://www.liannelahavas.com/