On Monday night I braved the cold and set off down the freeway to catch the first show of Lisa Mitchell’s Heavenly Sounds tour. I’m not religious, but the opportunity to see this exciting singer-songwriter perform in Newcastle’s stunning Christ Church Cathedral was too tempting to refuse.
Georgia Fair warmed up the crowds with their harmony-laden brand of folk music. I’ve seen the lads perform a few times now, but against the dramatic church setting they delivered perhaps their best set yet. The superb acoustics of the church worked well with their stripped back style, and I lapped up every second of it. Of course, there was more to come.
When Lisa Mitchell took to the stage it became clear that this wouldn’t be just another musical performance. She started her set reading some poetry from John Burroughs before welcoming her musicians and supporting vocal trio on stage. It was an unusual beginning, but one befitting a night with this quirky talent. She played a few gorgeous new songs before pleasing the masses with “Neopolitan Dreams.” I’ve always loved this whimsical track, and it sounded especially good in the church.
That easy mix of old and new tunes continued throughout the evening. She chatted shyly in between the songs. That banter still doesn’t seem to come naturally to the softly spoken singer, but I appreciated the effort. I also found it interesting to watch her stammering, then singing so effortlessly. She’s clearly a girl most comfortable making music.
While leaving Lisa to perform solo, her band discovered the lunar eclipse outside. She was desperate to see it too, but dutifully played a few more numbers before rushing off. An encore was inevitable, but the break allowed her to see the sky’s performance. She assured us there’d be a little left after she played some more, and sure enough we managed to see the tail end of it as we left the church. Staring up at the moon was a fitting end to a night that wasn’t religious, but definitely felt spiritual. Lisa Mitchell has the voice of an angel, and it’s impossible to be unmoved as she encourages you to chant with her or clap along. If the Newcastle show was any indication, fans are in for a real treat as Lisa takes in churches around the rest of the country.
Image source: Wideangle@108dB @ Flickr
One comment to “Lisa Mitchell @ Christ Church Cathedral, Newcastle – 4 June 2012”
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