Caro Emerald at the Royal Festival Hall
The overwhelming feeling you take away from seeing Caro Emerald perform is that of her music still writhing in your veins. Emerald has an incredible physical presence on stage, with an indisputable power and beauty in her voice.
Emerald performed songs from her debut album Deleted Scenes From The Cutting Room Floor and the latest, rather more cosmopolitan, The Shocking Miss Emerald. The entirety of the concert was in itself a performance: emphatically-timed strobe lighting and projected backdrops created an exhilarating atmosphere, but Emerald had more than enough charisma to light the room on fire. She had the audience eating from the palm of her hand from the moment she danced her way onto the stage.
The concert felt extraordinarily intimate. By the close, the entire hall was on its feet, dancing and clapping to the rousing music. Emerald brought the house down and seduced the room with the sassy sensuality that she exuded. Not just through her earthy voice with those distinctive swinging vowels, but also with the music she embodied as she danced to the solos, hips swinging and eyes closed. Her voice rang strong and true for the vast majority of the songs, and displayed its power when performing with sparse musical accompaniment from her acoustic album.
The instrumentals during her absences on stage were intricately played and note-perfect, bringing the audience to a crescendo of anticipation. The backing band were finely timed and throatily rich; sweeping the hall with a pulsating beat that rose to a climax by the time the concert began to come to a close. “Get to your feet!” Emerald cried as she returned to the stage after her third dress change, conducting the crowd with her arms, her feet bare, making it clear to all that she was completely at home.
That collective involvement was what made the concert. Instead of being there to merely present her music, Emerald waltzed onto the stage and immediately made not only herself, but also everybody else, at home. She left the stage to a riot of cheers and applause, and performed several songs in her encore, including a beautiful cover of If You Go Away (Ne Me Quitte Pas). By the end, nobody wanted to see her leave the stage, least of all Emerald herself.
Photos: Filippo L’Astorina
For further information about Caro Emerald and future events visit here.
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