Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Liz Green Album Launch @ Kings Arms, Salford, Saturday 12th November 2011

“Welcome to Liz Green’s album launch party – I put the emphasis on party rather than slick gig...” These are the opening and warmly appropriate sentiments of George Thomas from support band on the night The Thomas Brothers. This is more of a celebration of the four years it’s taken for Green to release her debut LP, O, Devotion (through Play It Again Sam).

The Thomas Brothers open the evening’s proceedings with their upbeat 60s rockabilly with wonky edges courtesy of “astronaut sound effects” and occasional use of an old Ace Tone organ. The duo charm the room and have them in stitches between songs – “If you like watching rehearsals, you must be loving this.”

But the night isn’t about trying to win over a hostile crowd; it is a gathering of friends and well wishers all set on helping Liz Green celebrate her first full length release. And as such when Green does take to the stage she begins by downing a glass of rum to a chorus of “down it!” from the room.

However, for all the banter and general frivolity in the packed room, when Green opens with the a capella ‘Grinnin’ In Your Face’ it shows why everyone is here. Her idiosyncratic songbird warble causes the crowd to become listening statues before joining in to clap and stamp along bringing the song to a close.

Two songs in, Green’s band (who she affectionately names 'Team Me') join her on stage to begin a whole host of bouncy double bass driven songs with a slow 1920s sounding brass section that is always present but never overpowering. The only thing missing from the swirling jazzy sound is a stereotypical overabundance of finger clicking and toe-tapping.

Despite being a night full of warmth, rambling stories between songs and hand drawn storyboard explanations of songs, Green always brings it back to her record’s more sombre feel. “Enough of the hilarity; here’s a song about death,” is her way of introducing 'Hey Joe', a song about her half-man, half-bird imaginary friend.

Green is clearly in great spirits about finally releasing O, Devotion on a night which shows just how much affection and devotion there is towards her, both in the room and surely soon from a much wider audience.

The Set List

Grinnin’ In Your Face [Son House cover]
Dying Crapshooter’s Blues [Blind Willie McTell cover]
Ostrich Song
Midnight Blues
Displacement Song
Rag and Bone
Hey Joe
The Ballad of Joe and Oko
The Quiet
Bad Medicine
French Singer
Bei Mir Bis du Shoen

Words: Ben Robinson
Set list courtesy of Folly of Youth.

1 comment:

  1. 13 Nov 2011: