★★★★★ Alison Moyet – The Minutes Tour
From her early days as one half of Yazoo to her multi-million selling solo career, the last 30 years has seen Alison Moyet remain one of the most talented singers around. Her sultry voice has seen her take the guise of an electronica sensation, a husky jazz singer, a pop star and a huge voiced balladeer as she has ploughed her way through the years refusing to allow herself to be pigeon holed.
Her current tour is to support the release of her latest album, The Minutes, with both the critically acclaimed album and the tour bringing Moyet back to her electronic roots. Seamlessly blending together a rich collection of songs from her current album with a range of classics from both her solo albums and her time with Yazoo, she provided a flawless set which is strangely both very retro and incredibly contemporary simultaneously.
From the opening number, “Horizon Flame”, Moyet was in absolutely incredible voice, as she stood, flanked by two very talented musicians, in the centre of a stage awash with stars, creating an memorable opening and setting a high standard for the remainder of the concert. Her vocal performance throughout the set was simply outstanding and note perfect, never once sounding anything other than natural and unforced. She looked absolutely stunning and between songs, Moyet chatted casually with the audience coming across as warm, personable and genuine.
The set list contained a good balance of her new material and her classic hits. A stripped back version of “Ordinary Girl” was a particular highlight, as was her haunting rendition of “This House” which made the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. For long term fans, there were the inevitable (and welcome) renditions of “Love Resurrection”, “All Cried Out”, “Is this Love” and “Whispering Your Name”. Finally thrown into the mix were a number of songs from her partnership with Vince Clarke with the Yazoo classics “Nobody’s Diary”, “Don’t Go” and “Situation” amongst others. The tracks from her new album sounded incredible too, with excellent renditions of “Filigree” (which was simply beautiful), “Apple Kisses”, the dubstep infused “Changeling” and her latest single “When I Was Your Girl”. What was impressive was the reworkings of her older material which made the songs sound fresh, contemporary and up to date despite some of them being near enough 30 years old.
This was a concert which was about quality music and vocals. But the lighting design brought the stripped back set to life in incredible ways, with some of the best, most immersive lighting I have seen at a concert for a number of years. The lighting designer and team deserve recognition and credit of their outstanding work, with the whole concert being enhanced by the brilliant designs. At time the whole stage (and audience) were awash with colour, had beams of coloured lights penetrating the smoky atmosphere and drew the audience almost onto the stage.
Moyet’s vocals cannot be praised highly enough – she manages to sound even better live than she does on her albums, effortlessly demonstrating an incredible range and an ability to powerfully perform without the need for any infernal caterwauling and vocal gymnastics that so many of today’s singers seem to favour. Moyet could certainly teach the X-Factor generation a few things. Grab a ticket for this tour whilst you can and treat yourself to an evening of old school excellence which will blow you away.
The Minutes Tour continues across the UK.
Details can be found at http://alisonmoyet.com/?p=9751
In between visits to the theatre, watching films, photography, walking, scuba diving and singing (badly); Paul writes for TheGayUK.