Review: KT Tunstall at Albert Hall

Brit and Ivor Novello Award winning singer and songwriter KT Tunstall played to a sell out crowd last week.

During the supporting acts of Gorran and Laurel the hall really began to fill up with people jostling for a seat, spilling beer and generally getting noisier in anticipation of the arrival of KT.

The hall was bursting at the seams when KT came onto stage to the Sound of ‘Hey Micky’. Dressed in a white sleeveless t-shirt, silver trousers and white baseball boots, brandishing her bright red guitar, looking and sounding like the Scottish rock chick she is.

Before starting the classic ‘Other Side of the World‘ she got to know the audience, thanking Manchester for a sell out and telling them, in her broad Scottish accent, to “budge up and let people shove in”.

Image: Jack Kirwin

“Where have you all come from?”

One member of the audience shouted “Bristol!”

“Jesus Christ how far is that! Come on get your phones out” and then broke into the song with the audience joining in. One track in and the hall was buzzing.

Between every track KT would talk to the audience as if she had known each and every one of them all her life – regaling stories about the tracks and her life. Being on a boat with twenty artists and musicians writing songs about the environment and thinking she was eating “Whale meat”. ‘Little Red Thread‘ was about how everyone and thing in the world connects in some way – sung beautifully on her own with an acoustic guitar.

Image: Jack Kirwin

Halfway through there was an acoustic session that KT resembles to singing round a campfire where an artificial flame burned, and the band sat around her. Percussion was provided by a dustbin lid as they played ‘Heaven is a Place on Earth‘.

Later in the set KT described her influences and idols in her music; Tom Petty, Led Zeppelin, Fleetwood Mac, Joni Mitchell and how she was so saddened by the loss of David Bowie. She collaborated with Franz Ferdinand’s Nick McCarthy to write the song ‘The Night Bowie Died’ before starting the haunting song.

Image: Jack Kirwin

The set finished with ‘Saving my Face‘ from her 2007 Drastic Fantastic album.

The encore began with one my favourite tracks from her Tiger Suit album; ‘Push the Knot Away‘, before moving straight into ‘Suddenly I See‘ with the whole audience joining and jumping up and down to the chorus.

Image: Jack Kirwin

The drinkers in Albert Schloss below could have probably felt the ceiling was coming down. KT was loving it and had the energy of a sixteen-year-old running about on stage, finishing the night with her band’s version of Cyndi Lauper’s ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun‘ and they certainly did.

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