If These Walls Could Talk – Jill Lorean live

Jill Lorean / Ali sha Sah / Raveloe – The Hug & Pint, Glasgow – Saturday 28th May 2022

Having been robbed of seeing Jill Lorean’s EP launch a couple of years ago by the pandemic, there was no chance we were missing the launch for the This Rock LP, not least because it’s sure to feature highly in my favourite LPs of 2022.

The show was delivered by the tight trio of Jill on guitar and vocals (and briefly violin), Andy Monaghan on bass and Peter Kelly on drums. The live incarnation of This Rock’s gothic Americana was direct and propulsive but never overshadowed the strength of the songs.

‘The Breaking Down’ eased us gently into the show – Jill’s violin giving the song an eerie feel before she ditched the violin in favour of her guitar for ‘Mothers’ as the trio blasted through almost all the new album with the bonus of half of the Not Your First EP thrown in. Whether it be singles like ‘Kneading’ or ‘Walls’ or album tracks like ‘Beekeeper’ or the title track itself the songs seemed to thrive in the cramped basement at the Hug & Pint whilst the selection of EP tracks played, such ‘Strawberry Moon’, sounded massive.

It was an exhilarating set but, no matter how good the material before is, the closing epic ‘Black Dog’ is an emotional roller-coaster and undoubtedly the standout of the evening.

There were clearly some first night nerves as Jill apologised several times for mistakes, but she did seem to be the only person who thought it mattered!

Hopefully there will be more shows to follow because the album is begging to be played live again.

There were two supports Ali sha Sha and Raveloe.

This was the first chance we’d had to see hotly tipped Olive Grove signing Raveloe (aka Kim Grant, one time of Tongue Trap, who featured on the blog here), who performed the opening slot solo. 2021’s debut EP ‘Notes and Dreams’ was a promising debut recording and ‘Steady’ from the EP kicked off proceedings here. Kim’s a charming performer and she’s armed with what’s clearly a growing collection of songs as there’s songs I didn’t recognise from the EP.

Last year’s brilliant single ‘New House’ was the song I knew best and, based on that familiarity, probably my highlight in the set. But I hope that we’ll become familiar with the rest and see her live again soon. (Spoiler – we already have!)

Ali sha Sah performed with a co-vocalist and cellist/thereminist in a set she described at one point as “an experiment”. It was certainly that because, although none of the individual elements in the songs were particularly discordant, the overall effect of putting them all together was quite unsettling. It wasn’t an easy listen but the performance undoubtedly found favour with at least a good part of the audience.

So, all things considered a fine evening which certainly can stand proudly besides the recent run of shows featured on here.

Gallery of photos from the show:

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