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AAA Music | 23 May 2024

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Smoke Fairies – Live @ Norwich Arts Centre

| On 09, Feb 2020

Monday 3rd February, Norwich

I’ve seen Katherine Blamire and Jessica Davies as the Smoke Fairies five times now and the first was just the two of them singing harmonious folk tunes in a tent at Latitude Festival back in 2007. They have grown since then, into a mesmerising and wonderous folk-rock outfit. Their first album in five years is called ‘Darkness Brings the Wonders Home’ and is more blues rock heavy than folk but the harmonies remain intact and sound even sweeter.

They are supported by John J Presley, who also joins them on stage accompanied by a drummer, he is a man who knows the electric guitar well and performs like a man possessed. His sound is a mix of swamp rock, electric blues and classic song writing is fairly reminiscent of Nick Cave. His set is very well accomplished and enjoyable.

The Smoke Fairies come on to the intimate stage of Norwich Arts Centre and an appropriately atmospheric dark and smokiness that sets the mood of the music perfectly. The set is mainly comprised of the new album, which certainly has a harder edge that really shows off the great vocal harmonies and also the intertwining sound of the electric guitars. New songs ‘Elevator’, ‘Super Tremelo’ and ‘Don’t You Want to Spiral Out of Control’ really set the pace and subtle change of direction to the bands sound. The crowd throughout are fully engaged and quietly spellbound in an appreciative manner

Old songs also feature with a stripped down ‘Summer Fades’, the exquisite ‘Feel it Coming Near’, the hypnotic ‘Eclipse the All’, and the slide guitar heavy ‘The Three of Us’. However, it’s the newer songs like ‘Out of The Woods’, which are more intense and harder hitting songs that break and build and very effectively showcase the talents of both Blamire and Davies quite brilliantly.

Nige Nudds