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Live Review: Ed Harcourt – Friday 18th June 2010 – Wiltons Music Hall, London, UK

3 min read

Singer/songwriter and chamber popster Ed Harcourt’s latest venture in poetic self assessment came to fruition with his latest release Lustre which seen its release this month. To follow the albums release Ed has been on the road promoting the record and added a date at Wilton’s Music Hall on Friday 18th June to perform songs from the record.

Set within the gorgeous rustic confines of the worlds oldest grand music hall the floppy fringed singer came on stage just after 21.30pm to an intimate audience of around 250 appreciate and eager Harcourt fans.

Diving straight into his set of emotionally charged and vulnerable chamber pop numbers the Sussex singer showcased his new record with pure showmanship and perfection, delivering a superb 90 minute set of live gems including Church Of No Religion, Heart Of A Wolf and A Secret Society.

Harcourt was confident throughout the set and it felt a genuine pleasure and honor to be in such close proximity to a master of intellectual songwriting craft who passionately allowed his music to take over him entirely.

His seven piece band supplying trumpet, cello, guitar and the harmonious and haunting backing vocals of the Langley Sisters were on top form and close knit with the musician at the helm often having a laugh together and waving hello to friends and family in the crowd. The cosy two tiered stage gave a great view of all the band leaving no one in the shadows.

The set was equally balanced with ballads like the emotive and deep Fears of a Father, the album highlight Haywired, double bass heavy Killed By The Morning Sun and the standout gospel church inspired and eerie Lachrymosity (with an incredible ‘why-so-sad’ bridge that gave me goosebumps) with thunderous orchestral upbeat pop and rock numbers Do As I Say Not As I Do and A Secret Society.

The concert was a truly instrumental old time music hall spectacle garnished with cello’s, trumpets, acoustic guitar, 2 pianos and even a charming xylophone addition on The Trap Door. Harcourt moved around the stage from piano to guitar as well as shedding all instruments apart from a hand held vintage mic in the 3 song encore and frequently amused and chatted with the adorning crowd.

One of the enchanting additions to the night was the Langley Sisters whose voices merged beautifully with Harcourt’s passionate and heartfelt tones.

I am a fairly new listener of Ed Harcourt and found myself eager to see the performer after hearing Lustre and I’m glad I did because it was an enlightening and incredible performance from a superb musician.