Live Review: Jordie Lane, Francolin, Thommy Wilson

21 August 2012 | 9:09 am | Clementine Lloyd

More Jordie Lane More Jordie Lane

The Regal Ballroom, not quite the establishment one would expect to encounter when watching an artist known for commotion. But here we are, waiters milling, white tables and chairs surrounding a pristine wooden dance floor, one Thommy Wilson standing solo armed with an acoustic guitar, his heavenly vocals for company. Channelling British songstress Laura Marling for his cover of Blackberry Stone, pure passion ensconces him like a warm blanket. The hazy lilting quality of his arrangements accompanies his cut glass vocals while musing “All I want to do is dance with you in the rain”.

The raised stage with its plush velvet drapes next becomes home to five-piece Francolin. Someone is primed to make dancers of voyeurs, so we tentatively invade the floor jiving with all the freewheeling vivre of their music. Guitars, trumpets, bass and drums amp the crowd 'til barely any chair is left filled, before they bid their adieus leaving the spot open for Mr Jordie Lane and band.

The return of Matty Green on guitar and the beautiful Clare Reynolds lending her vocals for new and established tracks lends a family vibe, with Roger Bergodaz on drums and Zane Lindt on double bass, completing the ensemble. Being that he has recently spent time lost amongst the American landscape, writing and recording with Tom Billa in LA, Lane's set is flush with new tracks. Highlighting his stylish flux between introspection and lavishness, big sweeping stompers such as The Publican's Daughter give way to fresh new numbers. Sharper in their complexity, sweeping brushed steel and carefully plucked strings washing over Reynolds' swelling vocal marks Lane's talent for grand arrangements with a band in mind. Perhaps going solo is a thing of the past?

Never disappointing with his sharp wit and silly tales, we are regaled with stories of warring dogs and his mother's choice between the two (harder than choosing between Lane and his younger sister we hear). Before one could even shout 'encore!' we are bereft of the band and greeted again by Lane and the one and only Matty Green for the captivating I Could Die Looking At You. Dedicated to lovers, with a special mention of two friends who have chosen to wed, the audience sways under the spell of Lane's deep resonating voice. Whispers of a new record coming in 2013 leave you no choice but to get thee to a performance to get your Lane fix 'til then.

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter