Gig review: Louise Rutkowski, Glasgow

Louise Rutkowski
Louise Rutkowski
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SHE describes her seven-years-in-the-making new album as being “very personal”, and this proved a suitably intimate launch show.

Louise Rutkowski - Print Studio, Glasgow

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Best-known for singing on several recordings by This Mortal Coil – a cult 1980s dream-pop collective masterminded by Ivo Watts-Russell, founder of indie label 4AD – Louise Rutkowski has largely distanced herself from music since. The crowd-funded LP Diary of a Lost Girl, a collaboration with composer Irvin Duguid, has been a slow process of reconnection, and reflects on life and career from middle-age perspective.

Singing to backing tracks, with Duguid accompanying on keys, the sound was studio-quality sharp. The likes of Bedtime Story, Rhoda and the elegant Mimi mixed the haunting, slightly gothy qualities of This Mortal Coil with some of the slick adult-orientated soul of latter-period Blue Nile. Despite a cold, Rutkowski’s voice had a purity of tone that was never unkind on the ear.

It’s difficult to imagine her stuff setting the world alight, though a cover of Chvrches’ Lies at the end was a nice nod to a new band making music not too far removed from that which Rutkowski created in her youth.

And how many album launches end with a surprise cake iced with the artist’s record’s cover art? Not enough.

Seen on 14.02.14