Heather Findlay

Riverside, Newcastle

15 January 2020

Twenty years ago I saw a band called Mostly Autumn for the first time, on a cramped stage in a tiny club in Newcastle with bad sound and about seven people in the audience. They were pretty good, I thought.

Heather Findlay didn't stand out especially, she was just one among an ensemble of what were obviously, even back then, exceptional musicians. I had no idea then that 20 years and 80 gigs later I would be seeing Heather Findlay on a cramped stage in a tiny club in Newcastle with bad sound and slightly more than seven people in the audience, and telling you once again (for the 80th time?) that Heather Findlay is the best singer in the world today.

In front of her own band of exceptional musicians, Heather stands out as a star. It doesn't matter how small the stage is (so tiny tonight that she takes half a step back and almost falls over the drum riser), she's an absolutely magnetic performer, with a voice that can just sing... anything. Beautifully.

There's a disconnect between the huge voice and massive rock band sound that should be filling arenas and the intimacy that comes from the actual size of the club and audience. And I'm kind of selfishly glad that I can still experience that intimacy at her gigs. But really, she deserves to be filling arenas.

I know this isn't really a proper review of the concert. It's just how I feel.

Well, I guess that's true of all my reviews. Sorry.