LIVE REVIEW: Sweet Baboo, Clementine March, Lucas Renney @ Pop Recs, Sunderland (17.02.23) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image by Tracy Hyman

When the lights went out in Sunderland Sweet Baboo was up to the challenge. A power cut knocked out the electricity for High Street West but did not dim the energies of the folk country psyche performer who picked up an acoustic guitar and serenaded us from the middle of the dance floor.

There were no such problems for acoustic performer Lucas Renney; his battles were with his bad throat. A conflict the former Golden Virgin won as his soft, rather husky delivery gave extra resonance to songs of lost romances.

London-based French singer-songwriter Clementine March was reaffirming a love affair with Sunderland at Pop Recs. Many of her songs speak of her travel bug and most especially cycling and it was the city by the sea that saw her complete the C2C challenge.

Then we lost electricity, but Sweet Baboo was straight in at the deep end with Let’s Go Wild Swimming. We were asked to imagine all his instrumentation for Hopeless, drawn from impressive new album, The Wreckage. He even managed a flute duet with a whistling till. Then just as he was building to a climax power was restored and Sweet Baboo was able to complete his final two songs all plugged in on stage. Unplanned it may have been, but what a privilege to witness such an intimate musical triumph.


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