Léon at Islington Assembly Hall
Born and raised in the cold Swedish capital of Stockholm, Lotta Lindgren – aka Léon – knows very well how to warm up a full house. The pop singer delivered a performance with some character at the Islington Assembly Hall, one peppered with synthesisers and with lyrics flowing directly from her heart to the listeners.
Openers Nobody Cares and Baby Don’t Talk introduced the electronic components of Léon’s sound. As the artist remembered how she had been missing London for the last two years and that the concert marked the end of her European tour, the slower and more soulful sets arrived. The new song Falling best encapsulated the emotional strains adopted by the artist, which she alternated with high-pitched vocals. Gradually leaving behind the playful echoes of the first pieces, the tone got lower. Better in the Dark smoothly transitioned into Hope Is a Heartache, with the latter number getting an upbeat tweak through an interesting change of rhythm.
From the middle of the gig, Léon started interacting with the audience, asking about the dates happening at the venue and using the humorous moment to link to the story behind some of the songs she has written. As she also joked later in the night, quite a lot of her music comes from her relationships throughout the summer: both smaller and more significant crushes that have bolstered and inspired her to put into her passionate lyrics not just fleeting feelings but also her hopes and poetic views of the moment. Indeed, one of the best performances of the night was Dreams: Léon put her soul into these lines, and it transpired effortlessly, from the soothing melody of the piano to the comforting guitar sections.
The safe balance of low keys and nostalgic themes was too often at a risk, however, of repeating itself, for example in I Believe in Us, where only the final robust vocals stamped a notable difference in comparison to her other pieces. The acoustic Care to Care and Come Home to Me, with the help of suffused lights, switched briefly to a romantic register. Featuring a robotic voice for the chorus, Pink created another change of mood: at times a lullaby, the song went along the lines of a pretty melancholic pop tune. Offering a good dose of energy, smooth vocals and a perfect alternation between highs and lows, the lively Tired of Talking made it self-explanatory why the track had earned to the Swedish singer an instantaneous success, just before the gig ended with the danceable Surround Me.
Photos: Virginie Viche
For further information and future events visit Léon’s website here.
Watch the video for Tired of Talking here: