LIVE REVIEW: Nicole Atkins and Jim Sclavunos @ The Cluny, Newcastle (01.06.23) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image: Nicole Atkins & Jim Sclavunos by Shervin Lainez

Nicole Atkins and Jim Sclavunos perform at The Cluny in a technicolour of cabaret and rock. Fresh from opening for Stevie Nicks in North Carolina, Nicole Atkins and Bad Seeds member Sclavunos both share American roots, and their individual styles are underscored by a husky, earthy note to their music.

The show begins with a performance from quintessentially British Morris dancers, before Atkins opens with Neptune City, a hauntingly beautiful track in which her voice is almost watery, floating majestically across the stage. She later plays her hits Goodnight Rhonda Lee and A Little Crazy, both of which are found in her 2017 album entitled after the former track and which exemplify her soulful and richly sincere voice which blends perfectly with the thunderous energy of drums and bass. Sclavunos was cool on the drums, playing at first with a perceived nonchalance which then became an electric seizure of drumming towards the end. The pair’s cover of Tom Waits’ Strange Weather saw Sclavunos’ raspy and almost eerie voice fusing perfectly with the softness of Atkins’, delivering a captivatingly chilling performance.

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