Review time

Here are two great reviews of some of Roisin's most recent shows, giving the lady the credit she deserves.

The first one is from The Guardian, which gives the Brixton gig 4 out of 5 stars:

"It's a pleasure to entertain you," purrs Róisín Murphy, taking a quick breather between her pop-stamped disco, jazz-laced serenades and incessant costume changes. It is a brief but fitting aside for the ex-Moloko singer, because, like pop's other sparkling, shimmering gems Madonna and Kylie Minogue, Murphy's gigs are theatrical events.

A diaphanous curtain drawn across the stage illuminates long shadows of Murphy, her two backing singers and four-piece band, and acts as a screen on to which artful images are projected. Murphy variously sports sequin-covered masks, wears a large gingham-checked animal on her back and strides around the stage with two inflatable figures wrapped around her waist like a child's water ring. After all, the producer of Murphy's debut solo album, Ruby Blue, did sum her up as "a bit of a nutter". Her second album, Overpowered, has, however, cemented Murphy's position as Britain's most inventive and perhaps best-loved dance chanteuse.

The stuttering beats of Overpowered and the classy euphoria of You Know Me Better make for a heady start, but the paranoia-dappled Checking On Me suffers from Murphy's tendency to draw out her songs. With the wilfulness that has characterised her career, she curtails the mood with a diversion into the smoky sound of Tell Everybody and Moloko's I Want You. But Murphy's delicate croon is almost lost to the chatter of an audience here to shake their hips, not nod their heads.

Their intent is further interrupted by a five-minute interval. But when Murphy returns, she reignites the party, gliding from the glitter-coated stomp of Movie Star to the drooling lust of Primitives. She head-bangs wildly, pretends to beat up her two backing singers, and sings while lying in the outstretched arms of the crowd, having not just entertained but also impressed.

Picture courtesy of PaulJay. Check out his out his other amazing pictures of the show!

The second review comes from cluas.com, which calls Roisin "Ireland's greatest female performer":

Roisin Murphy (live in The Olympia Theatre, Dublin)

Review Snapshot: Róisín Murphy is, without doubt, Ireland’s greatest female performer and seeing her live results in a full on assault on your eyes and ears. That Murphy pulls it off whilst barely stopping for a breath is a testament to how much effort is put into staging such a spectacular show.

The Cluas Verdict? 9.5 out of 10

Full Review: Quirky is one of those words that can be used as a compliment as often as it can be used to insult somebody. Roisin Murphy LiveIt’s certainly a word that could be used to describe British electronic artist Bishi, last night’s support act. Arriving on stage dressed as a cross between Princess Leia and Cleopatra and armed only with an i-Pod and a sitar, Bishi certainly knew how to make an entrance. Thankfully there was substance to go with the, ahem, style and her fusion of tango, folk, pop and electronica served to warm up an audience that was getting larger by the minute.

It was clear from the audience that Róisín Murphy has a huge following amongst Ireland’s gay community, who made up a sizeable portion of the crowd, surpassed only by groups of college students wearing far too many scraves for an indoor venue. Regardless of sexuality or attire, each and every member of the audience jumped to their feet when the opening chords of Overpowered burst into life.

If I was to say at this point that the first 3 songs of the evening where the opening three tracks from Overpowered (an album which you really must own) you might think to yourself ‘hmm, that’s a bit boring.’ You’d be wrong. What makes Murphy such a brilliant live performer is the quality of her band and their ability to completely restructure their songs and yet lose none of the ‘oomph’ (that’s a professional music term) that makes them so remarkable in the first place.

What makes the show a spectacle though is not just the music and the quality of her band. Murphy’s own ability to dance, change costumes, crowd surf and provide free hugs (important in times of recession) whilst never drifting out of key has to be seen/heard to be believed. Murphy is by no means a pop tart or showgirl; she has a voice that can convey pain as easily as joy and a range many of her peers can only dream of.

The biggest cheers of the evening were reserved for Movie Star, Dear Miami and a stunning cover of the Brian Ferry track, Slave to Love. By the end of the night they were literally dancing in the aisles, some with more success than others. All told, Murphy and her band were on stage for over 100 minutes, giving excellent value for money and ensuring that every member of the audience went home happy. Well, everyone except the girl in front of me who spent the entire evening debating with her friend as to whether or not she should ‘go with a fringe or not?’ My verdict would be yes.

My verdict on the gig, however, is that Róisín Murphy is one crossover hit away from becoming even bigger than she ever was with Moloko. That many of my peers refuse to give her a chance for that very reason is a shame. On record, Murphy has the ability to merge a variety of influences without ever losing focus. Live, Murphy and her band display a level of musicianship above and beyond expectation. The performance that goes with it is an added bonus.

By Steven O'Rourke


Anonymous said...

Which Moloko song is it she sings with 2 mics on the tour whilst apocalyptic projections with a fly are being shown?

Anonymous said...

I think you're talking about "Dr Zee" on "I'm Not A Doctor", the second album.


Anonymous said...

That's so annoying how the first review called her a pop artist. Did they even listen to the music? I'd DEFINITELY classify her as electronic/experimental/soul. She's far too intelligent with her music to be compared to Madonna or Kylie.

But the second review was nice. She definitely can switch characters on a dime and does so with such amazing grace it's jaw-dropping.

Anonymous said...

And another thing, I'd love to see more recognition of how fucking fantastic the Moloko songs that she picked out for the tour are.

Some of the BEST and most OBSCURE songs Moloko ever did. I fucking looooooooooooove I Can't Help Myself. I really hope she starts doing The Only Ones again too... would be the biggest dream come true if she started performing Blink though.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree :)