Gig review: Thea Gilmore

Thea Gilmore. Picture: PA
Thea Gilmore. Picture: PA
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TOURING is a family affair for Thea Gilmore.

Thea Gilmore - St Andrews In The Square, Glasgow

***

Husband Nigel Stonier accompanies her on guitar and keyboards and her seven-year-old son Egan has started to make guest appearances on violin. Then there’s the musical bond with her excellent string players Liz Hanks and Susannah Simmons, exuding an ease and comfort which extends to her relationship with an audience.

Gilmore has now spent half her life as a working musician. It’s been a slow ascent to capacity shows such as this one, promoted by the Fallen Angels Club as part of its tenth anniversary celebrations, but her experience tells.

There is nothing radical in her approach, whether to the pacey likes of Start As We Mean To Go On or the tender reflections of Goodbye Old England and Love Came Looking For Me. Beautiful Hopeful, a pretty commercial number written, she says, by a “plain sceptic” for the bright young likes of Ellie Goulding and Adele, would not sound out of place coming from a fragrant young singer with a fraction of Gilmore’s subtlety.

Her smooth contralto voice was simply a pleasure to listen to, especially on the careworn ballads, but she really showed off her vocal chops on an unamplified cover of Summertime, stepping off the stage with her band to lead a rather special singalong with the audience. This was the natural point at which to say goodnight but the feisty guitar duelling of Are You Ready was a popular closer.

Seen on 12.06.14