Thea Gilmore performing her Ghosts And Graffiti 2015 Tour at The Glee Club Nottingham on Sunday 10th May 2015


Images and Review by Kevin Cooper

Thea Gilmore is a little bit of an oddity. She has been described as the “most coherent, literate and charged British songwriter of her generation” by Mojo Magazine, but she has never quite managed to navigate that tricky jump from next big thing to the thing itself. Which is a shame, because live she is a musician of searing talent, as demonstrated at The Glee Club last night.

Touring to promote her 15th and latest album, Ghosts And Graffiti, this amazing singer songwriter took a break from her usual 10 piece set up and went acoustic backed by a violinist, a cellist, guitarist and her husband Nigel Stonier on guitar and keyboards. Opener, Copper, had the audience singing along to the chorus whilst tracks from the album like Start As We Mean To Go On and the new single, Coming Back To You, were very well received. She showcased reworking’s of her old numbers such as Inch By Inch and London, but a real highlight was when she cleared the stage and sang the amazing Sol Invictus, with just her, a spotlight and that amazing voice.

Time spent retuning the guitars during songs gave way to her excellent storytelling, and this predominantly middle aged audience was with her from the beginning, with her having a quiet confident rapport with them. At one point she was reminded by her husband of her surroundings, to which she laughingly responded “I don’t specialise in Glee, it must be said”, a fact often evidenced from her deep meaningful lyrics.

There were stories of how she got drunk after performing on the Jools Holland Show before gently launching into Holding Your Hand. With her Joni Mitchell like presence, songs like Wrong With You and Old Soul allowed her rich voice to jump seamlessly across styles, albums and the decades. It was a real treat.