All Smiles as Newcomer Christina charms the Empire – Christina Perri live at O2 Empire Shepherd’s Bush, January 18th 2012

Posted: January 26, 2012 in Pop, Popular Music, Rock Music, Uncategorized
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Christina Perri at Shepherd's Bush Empire January 18th 2012

Christina Perri's loveliness charms the crowd at Shepherd's Bush Empire January 18th 2012

Sweet charm can go along away and relative newcomer Christina Perri exuded it in spades to a packed and expectant crowd at the Empire who just been ably regailed by support acts Jack Martello (who himself had just won the crowd over with his boyish charm) and Marcus Foster. 

Album reviewers in some quarters had commented on her debut  album Lovestruck being oversentimental.  However, I’d have anyone sing to me all night long if they could sing a ballad like Christina Perri does live. Music after all is about touching the soul  in what whatever way it moves you. There’s nothing wrong with written constructed ballads  about love and emotions.  But it wasn’t all about the ballad and in fact the show started off in a vary different vein. As if almost to prove a point. Christina strolled confidently onto the stage with her band and started with two up-tempo numbers including “Bang Bang”, a song with a chorus that was almost too chirpy for a song about the payback of having your heart broken.  The concert, then plunged back into a ballady phase with Chrisitina on piano as she sang and played  a rather dreamy sounding “Distance” and a track that’s not on the album but is in the Twilight saga lastest outing  – the gushy but good “A Thousand years”. To those  who are familiar or older enough to remember  the Moody Blues or Justin Hayward,  “My Eyes “ had a sort of dark drama about it in the style of Nights in White Satin or Forever Autumn only with a harder edge. Christina’s provided an acoustic section with “Crazy” and “Sad Song”. There was even a rendition Don McLean’s” Crying”.

It must be said Christina never stopped smiling throughout her show, even for the sad songs. She radiated so much niceness it hurt. At times, you could have imagined  her in the Disney film Snow White with cute  little birds coming down and chirping while sang. I’m not sure, though, about the references she made to have given birth to her album “Lovestrong” and about it being her baby.

Christina Perri tinkles the ivories at Shepherd's Bush Empire January 18th 2012

Christina Perri tinkles the ivories at Shepherd's Bush Empire, London, UK, January 18th 2012

My favourite moment in the concert was The Lonely, which Christina explained to the audience that he had written at a time when she found herself alone in Los Angeles and started thinking about what it meant to be alone.  This lyrics of the song, the awesome production bordering on mini piano concerto and the immense range of the artist’s voice made my hairs stand on end. The song “Mine”  total contrast   The audience were strongly urged to let them go and participate. With a musical backing ska rhythm, that was worthy of  the nutty boys of Madness only a few in the crowd took to dancing, though. In the end,  I could not stop smiling and was thinking all the way through the number of  the tune to Baggy Trousers. This brought the pre-encore part to a close.

Christina Perri at Shepherd's Bush Empire, London, UK, January 18th 2012,

Christina Perri at Shepherd's Bush Empire, London, UK, January 18th 2012

On the desert menu for the encore was  the top quality ballad ” Jar of Hearts”. This was the song that gave Perri her break into the big time and she acknowledged this. It’s a great song lyrically and was executed perfectly. Christina encouraged everyone to sing their hearts and they did.  Also notable was “Tradegy” that had an epic folky feel to it reminiscent of All About Eve’s “Martha Harbour. It also got another singalong going with its simple chorus La, La La …. Love.  The show reached a fabulous crescendo with  “Arms”.

I was pleasantly surprised by this show and how much I enjoyed it . Christina Perri was so lovely on stage  that you just want wrap to her up in cotton wool and take this young singer’s sunny personality home  to cheer you up. She lit up a dark January night. A great start to my gigs of 2012.

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