wed 21/10/2020

Angel Olsen, Electric Ballroom | reviews, news & interviews

Angel Olsen, Electric Ballroom

Angel Olsen, Electric Ballroom

Immersive haunting vocals from Missouri-born solo singer captivates for the most part

“You don’t always get what you want in life,” said Angel Olsen to a group of fans haranguing her at the front last night at the Electric Ballroom. She rarely uttered a word between songs but this was a defiant end to the evening. Though her powerful Orbison-like warbling travelled clearly across the smoky stage to the denizens  a much needed intimacy was absent over the course of her fourteen-song set.

“You don’t always get what you want in life,” said Angel Olsen to a group of fans haranguing her at the front last night at the Electric Ballroom. She rarely uttered a word between songs but this was a defiant end to the evening. Though her powerful Orbison-like warbling travelled clearly across the smoky stage to the denizens  a much needed intimacy was absent over the course of her fourteen-song set. A captivating presence who confidently delivers haunting vocals, she lost the connection with the audience in the final throes, who at first seemed rapt.

Brazilian opener, Rodrigo Amarante, who has accompanied Olsen across Europe, drew a decent crowd who silently swayed to the sounds of his solo acoustic charms. Swathed in smoke and yellow lighting, he delivered his dreamy melodies quietly entrancing those entering the half-full venue. His gentle lulls proved a fine aperitif to Olsen's more direct, steely-eyed approach.

There’s an aching intensity to the 26-year-old, Missouri-born singer who drew a hushed regard as she took to the stage with the opening track from Burn Your Fire for No Witness (her second full-length album released earlier this year), “I quit my dreaming the moment I found you”. Her moody lyrics instantly get under the skin. An oddly enthralling, unflinchingly sad and surreal ambience which is entirely Lynchian in its grip sweeps across the ballroom.

It is only on her fourth song when Olsen decides to break the silence, simply stating, “It’s good to be back.” She continues on her mellow, pained and breathless quest through a few more songs. And then, she sweetly waves to an over-enthusiastic fan before ramping it up with grunge-filled fury in "Forgiven/Forgotten". Olsen kicking into a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s "Dreams" is met with whoops of approval.

For the majority Olsen immerses the audience in a gloomy half-dream but her performance may have been better served at a smaller venue.

Olsen immerses the audience in a gloomy half-dream

rating

Editor Rating: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)

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