Kathleen Edwards + Peter Bruntnell @ Bush Hall, London – 6th December 2012

Kathleen Edwards + Peter Bruntnell @ Bush Hall, London – 6th December 2012Kathleen Edwards + Peter Bruntnell @ Bush Hall, London – 6th December 2012Kathleen Edwards + Peter Bruntnell @ Bush Hall, London – 6th December 2012Kathleen Edwards + Peter Bruntnell @ Bush Hall, London – 6th December 2012Kathleen Edwards + Peter Bruntnell @ Bush Hall, London – 6th December 2012

Canadian singer/songwriter Kathleen Edwards has slowly but surely been building a reputation as one of the most consistently impressive artists of the past decade, helped along nicely by last year’s Bon Iver-produced Voyageur album, and she’s over on our shores for three stripped back shows, concluding with an appearance at All Tomorrow’s Parties, curated by The National.

Tonight is the first of two gigs at London’s Bush Hall, a gorgeous venue complete with chandeliers and a sparsely decorated Christmas tree, and it’s a room well suited to her sound. Tonight she plays without drummer or bassist and, as a result, some of the more rocky numbers don’t have quite the kick they usually do.

Before all that though, we’re treated to a low-key set by one of Kathleen’s influences, Peter Bruntnell. Rolling stone mag called him “One of England’s best kept musical secrets” and tonight his brand of acoustic alt-country seems to go over well with the seated audience. He relates stories with the crowd between songs and is encourage (read bullied) into playing an extra song at the end by Kathleen herself. A great start.

With her 4th album recently being voted best Canadian album of 2012 by Pop Matters, this year has been a busy year for Miss Edwards. Indeed, it’s been a year of highs & lows, but has resulted in her fan base growing massively thanks to her most successful album to date. She opens the show tonight with the album’s first song, Empty Threat, and from there on in this is a night packed full of beautifully written songs, spanning her entire career.

Highlights include a heartfelt rendition of A Soft Place To Land, a stripped back Hockey Skates and the song Spin Magazine voted number 20 in its list of the top songs of 2012, a soaring Change The Sheets. She’s accompanied tonight by long-time cohorts Gord Tough and Jim Bryson, who do their best to fill out the sound but there are occasions where the lack of drums and bass does leave the songs wanting for more.

Edwards asks if anyone has been brought along tonight, not knowing who she is, before dedicating a superb cover of Nirvana’s All Apologies to the one girl who is a newcomer to her music. Tonight’s crowd includes many of her biggest fans, including some who have travelled from Sweden just for tonight’s gig! The reaction at the end of each song seems to take the singer aback somewhat but it’s absolutely deserved. Edwards’ voice is packed full of emotion on every song, and a rare outing for Sweet Little Duck could bring a tear to the eye of toughest person in the room.

Still very much underrated, Kathleen Edwards is finally beginning to get some recognition after a decade of great music. Tonight’s gig was a perfect showcase for those songs and a great talent.

Review & photos – Steve Gerrard

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

George Ezra @ Resort World Arena, 17 March 2019

An array of generations pooled around the Resort World gates, anxiously chattering away before the opening of the arena doors. […]

The World of Hans Zimmer – A Symphonic Celebration in Birmingham

Legendary composer Hans Zimmer has announced a spectacular new tour, ‘The World of Hans Zimmer’,  which reaches Birmingham next Thursday […]

Album Review – The Very Best of Newton Faulkner….So Far

Sit back, relax and immerse yourself with this best of album, which is as relaxing as a candlit bath. Newton […]

Larkin Poe @ The Glee Club- 11th March 2019

Boasting 15 years as a music venue The Glee Club has opened its doors to an intriguing sister duo from […]

Blood Youth @ Mama Roux’s – 7th March 2019

With the smell of nearby Digbeth Dining Club creeping in through the doors, Birmingham based openers Overthrone took to the […]


Fast rising indie pop rock quartet Marsicans are no strangers to our Birmingham Live readers. We stumbled on the band […]