LIVE REVIEW: Martha Hill, Heidi Curtis, Tom Smith @ The Cluny, Newcastle (17.10.21) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Following the tease of a spellbinding acoustic set at the Curious Arts LGBTQIA+ fundraiser in September, Martha Hill came and kicked the doors off The Cluny, paying off with interest the debt due on a long-delayed return to Newcastle for one of our premier adopted Geordies.

The night started with a lush opening from affable croak-strummer Tom Smith and a funky turn from multi-talented guitar wielder Heidi Curtis. Bounding onto stage with bags of soul, cheek and a crisp new suit fresh from a Whitley Bay charity shop (“I look like George Michael got into real estate”), the preternaturally charismatic Hill came out in full cobweb-blasting mode, dragging a palpably willing crowd along for the ride.

A whirlwind trip through an imposing and positively blooming body of work, a darkly seductive Boom got fingers clicking, 25 induced a football terrace singalong, gorgeous new tune Empire was rolled out (with a “mad music video” promised), and creeping banger Change made the bricks shake in a moment of pure release for Hill’s growing and passionate fanbase.

Full of emotion and visibly moved by the reception for this sold-out show – some had held treasured tickets for over two years – Hill was transcendent, summing up this special gig with a resoundingly Northern farewell: “thanks for being here; you’ve been fucking class.”

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