Rosie Carney at St Pancras Old Church
The St Pancras Old Church, on Pancras Road, is an oasis in London’s concrete jungle. Sitting next to a park, its tiny frame rests, confident but responsive. And it’s even more striking on a warm July evening. Trees stand guard, towering over the steeple, as the grass anticipates footprints and a stroked cheek, bony backs against a trunk and a head, resting on a hand.
People stand about talking, drinking, smiling in the cushioned air, as music drifts out from a gap in the thick stone walls. There is a relaxed family atmosphere, revellers come and go to smoke and mingle, taking a moment to contemplate before going back inside to hear more. Travis Is A Tourist and In Their Thousands draw people into the hall, where chairs are laid out, pew-like, running up to the stage.
Then, with a pause and a whisper, the gasp of a friend, Rosie Carney steps out on stage and the performance begins. Her voice, soft and feminine at first, finds its feet, giving way to notes and then a song. It has an edge, reminiscent of Casey Chambers and a visceral lilt. The music is folky, rocky, vicissitudinous, loud and offbeat one minute, soft and rhythmical the next. Touches of Bonnie Raitt can be heard in the style, the percussion sometimes staccato, then allegro, then balanced. She sings of being only human, of protecting someone who has been hurt and childhood images. But before long, as the first hours of solstice darkness draw in, she announces: “this is my last song.”
Winter is nice and quite interesting, about winter suns disappearing, suggesting emotional disengagement, stagnation and disempowerment in a society which sees the world more conceptually then intuitively. And she seems engage with the pressing political issues of the day, looking at the world from both a male and female perspective, which is somewhat unique in this epithet-based culture.
However, despite the gentle ambience, there is something missing. Whilst she has charisma, technical ability and a good voice, but seems to lack passion and the innate, intuitive relationship to music needed to propel her forward. In spite of the dedication of her backing band, her songs are broadly similar in style; she expresses herself more through instrumental dynamics than tone, pitch or melody. She did mention she was nervous though, which can be debilitating and make even the best give up before they’ve even started.
For further information about Rosie Carney and future events visit here.
Watch the video for What You’ve Been Looking For here: