Matt Cardle @ Koko 3rd October 2011

Matt Cardle the winner of last years X Factor played launched his album Letters at Koko. Cardle definately showed he was the worthy winner of last years crown as the material he played from the debut album just blew me away. My day started at 4pm when I arrived outside the venue. At that time there were 9 girls just sitting on the steps. I guessed they were big Matt Cardle fans. I was guest list for this gig which was something. The support artist Gabrielle Aplin had 10 pairs of guest list spots to give away and I was one of those lucky people. So I just want to say a huge thankyou to Gabrielle Aplin.  Doors opened at 7pm and I managed to get to the barrier. Aplin took to the stage and immediately launched into her own song Panic Cord. This song was delivered to perfection. It was soothing, it’s chorus was rather infectious and it was rather gentle as it was just Gabrielle on acoustic guitar. Panic Cord was ever so beautiful and uptempo towards the end. “Hello everyone. My name is Gabrielle Aplin. I’m going to play a cover it’s a song called We Don’t Eat by James Vincent McMorrow“. Now Gabrielle made this song her own. We Don’t Eat was a wonderful song and the fact it was just her on acoustic guitar worked wonders. She put everything into this song and the vocals were brilliant. “This song is quite old but I still like playing it” Aplin said before launching into Lying To The Mirror. Even though I enjoyed the set played on the night this song has to be my favourite. Lying To The Mirror was very upbeat and infectious which makes it stand out. The chorus was delivered strongly and if you carefully listen to the lyrics it’s conveying a message that we all lie to the mirror. “Hello Again. I’m so nervous I don’t know why” Gabrielle said before playing Ghosts. She had moved to the keyboard to play this beautiful song. It was the first time I had heard this tune and it was rather enchanting. It was then onto another cover Aplin performed at Maida Vale. This being her very own take on the Coldplay song Fix You. This time it was delivered to perfection there were no errors whatsoever compared to when Aplin played it last Wednesday. Just hearing this song live sent shivers up my spine. That is how amazing it was Aplin made the song her own and her vocals were really beautiful. “I keep shapeshifting, well I don’t actually” Aplin said after she moved back to her guitar. She then plugged her show at The Borderline on 14th November and based on this performance everyone should snap up tickets. Home which was just over a week old was next. This song was sublime and the guitar didn’t cut out. I would say that Home is a strong contender when it does come to releasing that debut album. “This is my last song. Thanks so much for having me” Gabrielle said before ending her set with the upbeat Never Fade. Just hearing Aplin perform again makes me look forward to hearing a longer set. Gabrielle has something extemely special and she deserves as much success as she can possibly get. It was a real shame there were people talking throughout the set as there are fans that appreciate the music that was sung. Her set was Folk Pop at it’s best and I’m sure she would acheive brand new fans from that one gig. I must say that the pairing was a little strange as both play two different genres of music (Yes Matt and Gabrielle do play Pop but one is Rockier and the other being Softer).


Panic Cord
We Don’t Eat
Lying To The Mirror
Fix You
Never Fade

Matt Cardle and band took to the stage at 9pm. The audience were definately geared up for what was a outstanding evening. “I just want to say a huge great thankyou to everyone for coming down. Thankyou for all of the support I’ll make it brief before I start blubbing” Cardle said to the crowd as soon as they stepped onto the stage. “I was looking through my lyric book one night and each song is like a story with a letter to someone, so I decided to call the album Letters” he then went onto say before playing the title track Letters. Now this was the first time I would of heard any material from Matt (I have heard Run For Your Life and When We Collide prior to the gig). I was captivated by this song Cardle’s vocals were beautiful and the first half was both soft and gentle. As soon as the drums kicked in that is when it got more pacey. “Thankyou so much” a humble Matt said after the opening song got a rapturous applause. Next up was Pull Me Under. I really liked this upbeat song was delivered perfectly. From the 10 songs sung on the night I see it as a potential single. Cardle then pointed out James Walsh (Starsailor) and Eliot James whom both wrote that song with Matt were somewhere in the audience. It was then onto All For Nothing which Matt wrote with Eg White (James Morrison, Adele). “This songs about when you love someone or something and you just want it to be safe”. This song was rather powerful and the rest of the crowd were loving it. The track up next was one written with Phil Thornalley whom wrote Natalie Imbruglia’s Torn.

This song was Stars & Lovers which was rather smooth and infectious. The song was rather uptempo as well. “This used to be one of my favourite tracks to play and it was actually the first song I ever sang for anybody on X Factor” Cardle said before launching into a spectacular and haunting version of Jolene. Matt made this song his own and the fact it was just him on acoustic guitar made it slightly special. For all those X Factor fans you will realise he never sang this song on the show which makes me wonder if he sung this prior to his actual audition. “I thought I’d play a track I sang on the show and I really felt like myself for two and a half minutes” and this being Moody Blues cover Nights In White Satin. This song was sung in week 8 and it definately went down well with the crowd. The band then took to the stage and launched into Starlight. This was one incredible song which Matt just powered through at ease. “This next song is another song wrote with Eg White. This is about a situation that happened to me a long time ago” Cardle said before launching into penultimate song Slowly. This song was very gentle and the lyrics were wonderful.

This is my first single” Matt said before playing Run For Your Life. It seems as if Matt considers this as his debut single. It may be down to the fact as When We Collide was a cover and this song isn’t. This Gary Barlow penned song was incredible and Cardle’s vocal performance was outstanding. There are bits which are extremely catchy. I love the chorus for some reason My Chemical Romance sprung to my mind throughout this song. The band went offstage and the chants for more followed. “Thankyou so much everyone, there is alot of people here in this room that helped me out around Christmas time” Matt then went onto say before playing his debut #1 single When We Collide. This song was sung acoustically and everyone was singing along with Matt. Ending the night was a cover and this being Alanis Morissete’s Univited. Towards the end it did get slightly emotional for Matt as there were some tears. All I can say about this song is WOW. Matt definately made it his own. The vocals were extraordinary and the song was more rockier in the second half.


Pull Me Under
All For Nothing
Stars And Lovers
Nights In White Satin
Run For Your Life


When We Collide

OVERALL: This was a fantastic evening. Matt’s tracks from Letters show alot of promise and there is no doubt that the album will hit top spot when it’s released. I enjoyed the night and having Gabrielle Aplin support made this the perfect combination.


4 Comments Add yours

  1. Sue Phillips says:

    It was nice to meet you on those steps outside Koko – we chatted whilst waiting to be let in, I was there with my OH and you were telling us how you’d been lucky enough to win tickets. Really love the review and I do agree that it was a magnificent night. Both artists were so talented, I don’t think there was a single note I didn’t enjoy.

    1. Planet Music says:

      It was good to talk to you as well 🙂

      It was an amazing night and I anticipate hearing Matt’s album and seeing Gabrielle live again.

      Hope you had a fantastic night too 🙂

  2. Sue Phillips says:

    Tbh, I think everyone had a fantastic night. I haven’t seen a bad review yet.

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