Paloma Faith’s sold out York Barbican show truly emphasised how popular an artist she has grown to be. With support act Brett Dennen providing a strong performance to kick the night off, the crowd was on a high. When Paloma entered in a self-proclaimed meringue outfit, the crowd erupted. Paloma has always focused on the aesthetics of the performance, right down to the improvised flowers worn in her hair which were sent to her dressing room by a local florist in Fulford. Her band were particularly entertaining, especially the dancing brass instrument players who appeared to be having as much fun as the audience were.
During her performance, Paloma favoured promoting her new album over performing hits from previous albums which would have probably received a better reaction from the audience. She pointed out during the show that her bigger hits would be included on her bigger arena tour. Perhaps this was a ploy to encourage fans to purchase a ticket. However, maybe she just has confidence in her ability to entertain her audience, regardless of whether the track is well known or not. I would have liked some better known songs that I could sing along badly to, but you have to commend her risk taking!
Throughout the evening Paloma came across as being incredibly down to earth, particularly when she moaned at a local photographer for trying to take an intrusive picture of her legs. She stated that “she does have cellulite” and that “we heard it here first”. Being so laid back about a private and potentially embarrassing matter is truly Paloma’s style.
As Paloma progressed through the set she began to show off her amazing vocal range, with every song becoming more and more powerful. Although at times the show wasn’t particularly fast paced and did start to drag, the end of the set was when Paloma truly got the crowd going. Her huge hit ‘Only Love Hurt Can Hurt Like This’ encouraged the entire crowd to sing along at the top of their voices, and was then followed by a brilliant cover of Roy Orbison’s Crying, dedicated to her mother who was in the audience watching, and all of the other mothers in the crowd. However, the real highlight of the night for me was Paloma’s cover of ‘River Deep Mountain High’ by her ultimate inspiration, Tina Turner.
All in all Paloma put on a fun show that was well received by the audience. She is clearly incredibly talented and has a loyal fan base who will no doubt continue to ensure that her concerts are sold out. I have definitely got every faith that Paloma will have a fantastic arena tour next year.