Live Review: Gabrielle Aplin, Sonny & Shannon St Clare - O2 Academy2, Birmingham 20/10/2017
Just a couple of weeks after the release of her new EP ‘Avalon’, British indie-folk singer-songwriter Gabrielle Aplin came to a sold out o2 Academy2, Birmingham, and a captivating evening ensued.
First on to the stage was Shannon St. Clare. Equipped with an acoustic guitar and a dainty voice, St. Clare was a delightful start to the evening.
Next up was happy chappy Sonny, who dazzled the audience straight away with not only his charm, but also his talent. Alongside his original songs, he also dropped covers of Sam Sparro’s ‘Black and Gold’ and 4 Non Blonde’s ‘What’s Up?’ Not only did he successfully win the audience’s heart, he also managed to make the cover songs something unique and interesting.
An exciting buzz occurred as the change-over from Sonny to Gabrielle Aplin. A noticeable aspect about Aplin’s fan base is that she appeals to a wide variety of fans. As the lights dim, the crowd cheers as Aplin enters the stage, and her and the band go straight in to Sweet Nothing.
“Thank you for singing along, it does wonderful things for my ego!” laughs Aplin as the band finish Panic Chord. The spark that Aplin produces on stage between herself and her fans is astounding, as the audience react with laughter and cheers. It’s no surprise that Aplin is also as honest as she is witty either, as she explains about her small break from touring for ‘needing to be a human being’, and with that she slows it down for Heavy Heart.
Whilst Aplin is playing you could almost hear a pin drop, if it wasn’t for the loud thuds of Dizzee Rascal next door. With fans stunned in to silence as this tiny woman produced a magnificent voice, Aplin was still nothing but humble throughout the evening, even with the circumstances. Despite all this, Aplin played her cover of The Power of Love, a hauntingly beautiful rendition which ended with fans quietly singing along, as to not take away the atmosphere.
Aplin’s voice throughout the evening is consistently spellbinding, as she hits higher notes almost effortlessly. ‘Please Don’t Say You Love Me’ had one of the biggest reactions of the night, as everyone around was dancing or swaying, and as Aplin let the audience sing they did not let her down.
As the main set began to wind down, the audience were treated to ‘Salvation’, where Aplin’s talent and vocal range really shone through. The evening as a whole had catered to both older and newer fans, and went down an absolute treat.
The night came to a close, with the main set ending with ‘Miss You’ and the encore (which the audience did not let go of easily as the moment Aplin left the stage, they were begging for more) of ‘Stay’ and ‘Home’. It is clear that Gabrielle Aplin has a loyal fan base, and with good reason. As Aplin’s voice leaves shivers down the spines of those who appreciate her, this will be an evening that fans will remember for a long time.
Review and Photography by Sarah Maiden