LIVE REVIEW: George Boomsma, Kate Bond, Faye Fantarrow @ Old Cinema Launderette, Durham (03.02.22) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image by Tracy Hyman

What more perfect way to celebrate Independent Venue Week than to go to a gig in a launderette? After the clothes have been washed and dried, long past closing time, three of the North East’s most talented singer-songwriters play against a backdrop of Persil and Daz at one of the country’s most unique venues, The Old Cinema Laundrette.

Armed with acoustic guitar, Faye Fantarrow‘s folk-tinged pop songs fill the tiny venue, the attentive audience sat in front of the washing machines. Emotional and expressive, stand out tracks tell of visits from the black dog and a funky and rhythmic trip to Sin City, which fills the rooms with finger clicks a plenty.

Kate Bond’s rich, soulful songs are lyrically inspired by past experiences and the world around us. Important issues, such as mental health and toxic relationships, are brought to the fore. Light-hearted and wistful in style, she sings from experience. Low-garage stylings of Mind highlights her struggles with mental health. Whereas The 97 is about “the 97% of us that think men are creepy” and the kill the bill protests.

George Boomsma completes the hattrick with his beautiful, lilting and dreamy folk songs. Hilarious anecdotes and self-deprecating tales in between songs give us insight into his influences. My Sixties Weekend tells of a wedding in a posh house, followed by a festival where “everyone was naked” and a midnight ceilidh. Others, George tells us, were written whilst eating a cheeseburger and drinking a pint of Doom Bar. The last song, Ready to Go, gives us a taste of great things to come. Although none of us were ready to go home.

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