Review: Paloma Faith at the BIC
Paloma Faith supported by XamVolo
Bournemouth International Centre
Over three years since her last album, Paloma Faith is back touring with her new release The Architect. And as someone who knows little about Faith and her music, I was keen to hear what the Brit Award winner had been working on.
The evening started with support act XamVolo, an R&B/soul singer who exuded cool. Standing on stage with one hand in his pocket, there was no need for stage theatrics – his voice did all the work and his smooth tones resonated throughout the Windsor Hall.
It wasn’t long after XamVolo that Paloma took to the stage, met with a roar of excitement from the crowd. Dressed from head to toe in glitter, she belted out her opening number with a confidence that told everyone she was back and meant business.
But this wasn’t just an evening of musical entertainment – Faith opened up about her life over the last three years with an honesty that was both endearing and thought provoking. Just as her new music deals with personal and political themes, throughout the show she spoke about everything from the challenges of motherhood and social anxiety, to the refugee crisis and an ex-boyfriend who became entangled with the law.
The tracks she performed from her new album reaffirmed why Faith is an award-winning artist, with her last three albums going double platinum in the UK. The varied sounds and powerful lyrics captivated the audience, with everyone on their feet for tracks like My Body and Til I’m Done and wiping away tears during Love Me as I AM – the track she wrote for her partner.
At one point during the show, Faith said she wanted to spread ‘an epidemic of kindness’, acknowledging the mixed reactions she gets when talking about political subjects. This sort of show isn’t for everyone, but for me this is what music should be about. It was refreshing to see a mainstream artist being so open and candid about her life and what she believes is wrong with society, wearing her heart firmly on her sparkling sleeve.
The whole performance was somewhat of an emotional rollercoaster – one that I didn’t want to get off. I came away with a new-found appreciation for Paloma Faith and her music, but also with the feeling that I’d got to really know her as a person. If I wasn’t a fan before, I definitely am now.
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