LIVE REVIEW: Matt Maltese, Sophie May @ The Cluny, Newcastle (27.09.22) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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You don’t go to see a performer like Matt Maltese to have a raucous time; there should be no expectations of violent catharsis in fighting and jostling in the maelstrom of a mosh pit. Those shows have their place of course, but a Matt Maltese show offers something entirely different, and in many ways much more personal.

Maltese specialises in treating human emotions with a unique blend of tenderness and wry humour that, while not unique solely to him, are something he has had perfected from a remarkably early stage in his still young career. The effect this had on his live show on a rainy Newcastle night was immediately apparent if you were to look around at others in attendance; every song would inspire an exchange of glances and smiles, arm-over-shoulder singalongs, and audible murmurings of excitement as the first notes hit.
It was an intimate, personal show. It was exactly what people listen to someone like Maltese for. The band w
ere tight, the embellishments to the tracks were tasteful, and the audience were even treated to a bossa nova rendition of Strange Time immediately after the beloved original. The crowd was responsive, from support act Sophie May’s low-key set of catchy melancholic lullabies to the final anthemic chorus of As The World Caves In, and the performers seemed sincere in their appreciation of this.

For a freezing cold, rainy Northern night, it was a cosy, warm affair, from someone with a future even brighter than his present.

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