#EventSpeaks: Seasick Steve @ Brighton Dome – 13/11/18


   

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On Tuesday 13th November 2018, Seasick Steve arrived in Brighton, in support of his most recent album, Can U Cook? He was supported by country singer Prinz Grizzley & His Beargaroos.


Prinz Grizzley & His Beargaroos

Prinz Grizzley took to the stage, accompanied by his “Beargaroos”, and displayed an impressive blend of country, folk and blues. The four-piece band pulled off some incredible vocal harmonies and certainly got the crowd warmed up for Seasick Steve. It’s truly amazing to see a German singer, demonstrating such an authentic, Southern States, wild-country vibe, with some honest, personal lyricism. A very high calibre of support that is bound to find some great success, even within this rather niche genre.

Highlight: The vocal harmonies the band performed at the end of the track Wide Open Country’ and the whole performance of ‘I Can See Darkness’ – beautiful track!


Seasick Steve

Seasick Steve is a wonderfully modest performer. Despite taking to the stage, to whoops, cheers and thunderous applause, in some respects, he still seems quite timid and reserved. Sure, he packs a punch when he needs to, busting out a move or two and rocking out with grungy, self-made guitars, in all the right places but equally, there are moments when his crowd interaction is somewhat mumbled and understated; he’s a unique performer, that’s for certain.

His honest yet simplistic, sometimes even satirical lyricism and bluesy songwriting style are perfectly matched by his husky, yet incredibly powerful vocals. He successfully merges a blend of country, blues and rock to create an all-consuming sound that found the audience losing themselves to the beat. Sure, there were the odd moments when a drunken audience member would lose themselves so much that they would attempt (and fail) to start a slow clap along to one of the more mellow, folky songs, before eventually giving up, but a Seasick Steve show is all about enjoying yourself, being free to participate however you like and not being afraid to be judged.

One thing that surprised me was the diversity of the crowd – you had your typical, Southern-American wannabes, middle-aged (and beyond) music-lovers – who probably heard of Seasick Steve on stations like Radio 2 but then there were the odd few teenagers – a demographic I hadn’t expected, but was pleasantly surprised to see thoroughly enjoying themselves.

Seasick Steve is a brilliant performer, and the fact he’s 77-78 years old and able to command the stage presence he does, just goes to show what a uniquely talented individual he is. If you haven’t seen him perform before, I can’t recommend him highly enough – I didn’t know loads of his songs before I went, but found myself utterly captivated. He won’t disappoint!

Highlights:

  • Seasick Steve‘s wonderful dance moves were highly entertaining – the guy really knows how to rock out!
  • The vast range of home-made guitars he uses, are something truly unique and frankly spell-binding to behold – what a talent!
  • His crowd interaction was hilarious – particularly when he got to the, “marketing part of the show,” where he talked about making the new album and showed off the vinyl sleeve, making a special mention of a picture in the top corner, where he’s “making out with a dog.” Hilarious!
  • The simplistic, yet humble stage set-up made it almost feel like you were watching a performance in his back yard – very intimate.

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 Setlist

Don’t Know Why She Love Me But She Do
St Louis Slim
Bring It On
Chewin’ On Da Blues
Sun On My Face
Hate Da Winter
Shady Tree (Dedicated to the ladies with long hair)
Can U Cook?
Started Out With Nothin’
Down On The Farm (Dedicated to farmers)
You Can’t Teach An Old Dog New Tricks
Young Blood
Barracuda ’68

Encore
Insta This (Unreleased)
Thunderbird


Finally, I want to say a MASSIVE thanks to Hannah Leeland for setting up this review for me and to Seasick Steve and Prinz Grizzley for putting on an incredible evening.


Enjoyed this? Check out some of our other live reviews here:

Muzik Speaks Live Reviews


Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#EventSpeaks: Erasure @ Brighton Dome, Brighton – 19/02/18


   

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On Monday 19th February 2018, Erasure arrived in Brighton, on their World Be Gone Tour, performing at Brighton Dome. The duo were supported by Welshman, Rod Thomas‘ moniker, Bright Light Bright Light – it was an incredible show!


Bright Light Bright Light

Rod Thomas and his band mates took to the stage and put on a fantastic show, performing his own unique brand of electro-pop – it’s a combination of contemporary pop music, with an 80s tint to it; clearly inspired by bands such as Scissor Sisters and Erasure themselves. The use of modern technology produced a really full sound to the performance and filled the concert hall. The songs were well written, but there were a couple of songs that I felt blended into one. Undoubtedly Bright Light Bright Light has a big following and has worked with some incredible people but I was looking for a couple of stand-out tracks that I wanted to come home and listen to, which unfortunately I didn’t really find.

Highlight: The incredible harmonies Rod performed with himself (using his pads) as well as the brilliantly vibrant suit he wore.


Erasure

Erasure were incredible! Having been in the public eye since the 80s, this duo are clearly professionals at what they do, but it seems to come so naturally to them; Vince Clarke, although almost a silent partner when it comes to fronting the duo, clearly puts a lot of effort into his performance and production of the backing tracks, whilst Andy Bell is the camp, extroverted individual, fronting the outfit. Somehow though, it just works – whilst they might appear to be polar opposites of stage personality, I loved it…and so did the audience!

The pair were accompanied by two sensational backing singers who produced some incredible vocal harmonies alongside Andy and altogether, they performed a string of hit after hit.

The stage lighting was excellent and felt a bit like a club and the different combinations of light movements and colours helped add some visual diversity to the set. Andy‘s gradual removal of his clothes, down to his catsuit was very funny and lead to screams and cheers throughout the building.

Naturally, performances of songs like ‘Chains of Love’‘Phantom Bride’‘Sometimes’ and of course, ‘A Little Respect’, brought the house down, but they made sure to not only pack out their setlist but fill it with a wide range of career-spanning tracks to ensure there was something for everyone.

I can’t recommend seeing Erasure highly enough – whether you know just a track or two, or their whole back catalogue, they do not disappoint. You are guaranteed to have a fun-filled evening of dancing, singing and laughing.

Highlights:

  • Andy Bell‘s sassy, between-song banter, was on point! He knew his audience and was hilarious from start to finish.
  • The sheer tightness of their performance just highlighted how professional this duo are.
  • The vocal harmonies between Andy Bell and his backing singers was marvellous.
  • The string of hits they performed has the audience singing and dancing throughout the show.
  • Andy Bell‘s gradual removal of his clothing, down to his catsuit, was hilarious – it certainly made a statement.
  • Lastly, the set design was pretty cool too – the lighting was amazing and I particularly loved that Vince Clarke was able to do his thing from an elevated platform throughout the set.

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 Setlist

Oh L’Amour
Ship Of Fools
Breathe
Mad As We Are
Just A Little Love
In My Arms
Chains Of Love
Sacred
Sweet Summer Loving
I Love Saturday
Victim Of Love
Phantom Bride
World Be Gone
Who Needs Love Like That
Take Me Out Of Myself
Blue Savannah
Atomic (Blondie Cover)
Drama!
Stop!
Love You To The Sky
Always
Here I Go Impossible Again
Sometimes*

Encore
A Little Respect*

These songs can be viewed in the YouTube playlist, below.


Finally, I want to say an absolutely HUGE thanks to Thom Williams for setting up this review and to both Erasure and Bright Light Bright Light for their incredible performances. Oh…and Alan Carr for taking the time to have a couple of selfies with me!

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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