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Saturday, December 2, 2017

Aldous Harding - Issac Theater Royal - Chriatchurch - 30 November 2017

Regular readers(if indeed such persons exist) may recall me seeing Aldous back in early February, not long before she released the album for which this tour is supporting. The Album went on to get many positive reviews and much support in certain circles with one song even getting nominated for a Silver Scroll award here in New Zealand. In between times from the previous gig I attended, Aldous had been touring extensively The  USA and Europe and even had an appearance on Later with Jools Holland. The last gig at which I saw Aldous was preformed in an intimate small pub venue at which I have seen several great gigs over the course of the year and so after the year of touring and the fact that the Issac Theater Royal is a much larger venue than Blue Smoke, it was going to be interesting to see how she preformed in such a different venue.
 I had purchased the tickets for this concert way back in July and yet even that far back I was unable to secure seats down on the ground floor, so we had to settle for second row center on the second level of the theater. From what we could see, the gig was a near sell out in the 1300 seat venue, so a great testament to how far Aldous has come this year.
 Support was from Chills front man Martin Philips, who preformed some old and some new Chills songs, mentioning there was a new album out next year. He just played his electric guitar solo and it was nice to hear him doing Pink Frost and the other songs, the later ones I was not familiar with so much. I would prefer to see these preformed with the full Chills lineup, but it was still enjoyable and went down well with the crowd.
 There was a good 40+ minute wait before Aldous quietly took the stage in her white trousers and grey coat, seated herself on a stool center stage and with out a word started in on her first song of the night, singing something from her first LP I think(I should be more familiar with all her stuff by now). She did play a few other tracks from her first album, singing in that pixie/Irish voice she uses and which I think sound actually better on the record than live. Still not having spoken, but now with the rest of her band in support, the third song she did was my favourite, Horizon, from the Party Album, and although it was a good performance of a very good song, it failed to reach the heights of goosebump inducing jawdropping awe which was induced in me the previous time I saw her preform it. Also, I believe it is the sort of song to either open the show with a powerful statement or as the final number like at the previous show I attended.
 She finally spoke to the audience about half way into the show in response to some cat calls from the audience, but she was much more detached and less out spoken to us than the loquaciousness she displayed at the previous gig I mentioned. She played two new songs that she had recently written that were both impressive and aided in building excitement for the next album, bith songs she sung in the lower register voice she uses which recall Joni Mitchell to a drgree and that is not a bad thing.
 Overall, the show didn't have the same impact as the Blue Smoke gig, which didn't surprise me as I think her music and style of preformance suits more intimate venues, but still it was a great show and I love her music and it is great to see her doing so well.

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