David Gray @ Royal Festival Hall
aaamusic | On 12, Jun 2011
43 years, plenty of wit and one of the loveliest voices in pop music. David Gray comes back to London for an enchanting two hours show. It took nine albums to refine a talent that did not gain the deserved success, mostly because his research towards a whole new level of melody labelled him as ‘pop’ for some of the most hardcore folk fans, while the intelligence of his lyrics precluded him from commercial success, if we exclude White Ladder.
Seducing, enthralling, David Gray provided one of his best performances, impressing for its simplicity and class. The songwriter from Cheshire is a master of craft, he doesn’t create music only, but chisels it as a patient artisan. The result is magnificent.
Gray’s songs sound different from the studio versions. The atmosphere is cosier, the pace slowed down, the electronic effects mellow and tremulous. Not only the great hits such as Babylon, Alibi, and Please Forgive Me gather rounds of applause, but also some of his less known jewels, Kathleen and Ain’t No Love fascinate the audience.
There is something familiar about David that makes him lovable; his honesty moves the audience close together towards the stage in a big embrace. The standing ovation after the last notes of Sail Away is its most limpid evidence.
Author: Lorenzo Coretti
Photos: Luca Viola