Live Review: Elizabeth Liddle, Emma Robson @ Independent (29.10.21) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

Narc. Magazine Online

Reliably informed

Images by Victoria Wai

As I entered the dark Independent, illuminated by the odd splash of neon, the first thought on my mind was that it had been sometime since I lasted visited here for a gig. It was for PICNIC (a band Liddle has previously supported in the past) in October 2020, a gig that I have fond memories of – sitting down, socially distanced, watching great acts with my mates and being far too drunk for the metro back. Despite the embarrassment I most definitely made of myself that night, it was good to be back.

The night kicked off with Emma Robson, a charming singer songwriter accompanied by a second guitarist on an electric. The two had great chemistry, with banter in-between songs, such as the explanation for her beef with Ed Sheeran – which included him releasing an album on the day of her new single, Fair Weather Friends. She used this track to kick off the evening and it was effective in doing so, I enjoyed Robson’s warm vocal performance and she clearly has a knack for songwriting. Her talents here were best seen with her fourth track, Blame It On Alcohol, which in all honesty could’ve made me tear up a little bit.

Within seconds of Elizabeth Liddle’s first song commencing, the entire room fell silent. The band morphed her poppy debut single Lonely into something far more in line with modern piano rock.

The versatility of Liddle and her band was one something that surprised me during the gig. They evolved Liddle’s usual style into stunning piano-based rock pieces but were not afraid to further delve into other styles, like the funkier Fell Too Fast, or return to something more acoustic with Crazy Love. No matter the particular genre, Liddle’s songwriting constantly stood out, with the heart wrenching Is Heaven Okay being a stand-out, in which Liddle explored the grief she battled at 15 when she lost her cat. Every line was sung thoughtfully and drenched in sadness, it’s a track that I hope is given an official release soon.

The highlight of the night for me was the second to last song, Somewhere, as I loved the particular progression used on the piano opening. Liddle’s vocals were soft, the drums were delicate, the guitar and bass were feather light; it felt like a stark contrast to what I had now come to expect from Liddle and her band, but I found the more mellow song further emphasised their adaptability. I also found that it showed the chemistry between each band member, and how well everything slots into place. The night ended with Waiting On The Next One, which will be Liddle’s next single. This track felt like one more victory lap in the set, everyone giving it their all and flexing their skills. It had some of the strongest instrumentation of the evening, blending all the styles the band have tipped their toes in, from the funky bass to the acoustic opening.

Like this story? Share it!

Subscribe to our mailout