LIVE REVIEW: London Grammar @ Newcastle City Hall (29.10.17) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image by Adam Barnsley

Somewhere out there in the crushing darkness at the end of all things, Hannah Reid sits alone and backlit in the coruscating crimson of a looming red giant star, her plaintive song a heartfelt lament to love and loss.

A long way then from Nottingham University and her first encounter with would-be fellow London Grammarists Dan Rothman and Dominic ‘Dot’ Major, Reid opened the night with an endearing soft fumble, forgetting she and the band had been to Newcastle before, and so forging a promise that she would absolutely remember tonight.

A stunning sci-fi set boasted an aesthetic somewhere between Blade Runner and Kelly Richardson with hypnotic, dazzling LEDs and gorgeous wall-to-wall video work; a romantic apocalyptic backdrop to the three-piece belting out ethereal dream-pop and the best of their seminal debut long player alongside tracks from 2017’s Truth Is a Beautiful Thing.

Opening with Who Am I, a tight, elegant first half was capped off with the stunning Rooting for You and the highest note Reid has yet hit. Highlighting the weirdness of their first time ever playing to a seated venue, a looser second half saw the gang relax and puncture their art-pop façade with some nice back and forth as Reid hilariously forgot her words during Wide Eyed.

Portentous but positively playful, the trio brought the show home with Oh Woman Oh Man and an amped-up Metal & Dust, soaring vocals and a blistering trance-lightshow back through the stargate, leaving us somewhere out there across the universe.


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