Ellie Goulding @ Jazz Café 5th October 2012

After Ellie had performed at the iTunes Festival her next stop in London was at the Jazz Café 8 days after. This was the 2nd time Ellie had played for Q (the first had been New To Q in 2010). Tickets for this immediately sold out and it was no surprise considering how small the venue is inside. Being a massive Ellie Goulding fan I had to be at this special gig. I don’t normally get stressed with buying gig tickets but for this one I did. Aloud.com had a presale the day before which not a lot of people knew about. This then resulted in me going for the general sale. Knowing the capacity is 350 people, tickets are on multiple websites means that they all had a certain allocation. This is what made me nervous, one slip up and you have had it. I always use Ticketmaster and the code verification screen is the one I worry about as the words are not always clear. Thankfully I managed to secure one and then thoughts turned to what time to queue. The day finally arrived and it was an early start for me. I was outside the same time as I was when I was at iTunes the week before. The time being 10am, I misjudged when to queue as the next person was there around 2pm. Ellie has either lost some of her hardcore fans or people turned up later because it was a cold October’s day.

Taking to the stage just a little after 9pm was Ellie Goulding. This was the 2nd time I had witnessed her perform tracks from Halcyon live. Opening up the set was Don’t Say A Word. I found it to be a sweet sounding song which progresses into something utterly amazing. Don’t Say A Word was a powerful song and it had some rather beautiful lyrics. Like when I heard this song live at the Roundhouse my favourite part had to its middle 8.  “Thank you so much for coming” Goulding said to the audience before introducing the albums title track Halcyon. This tune was rather pacey and it sounded rather mesmerising. When I first heard this song through the previews it immediately stood out. Halcyon was a power pop song which tells you that things are going to be better. “How’s everyone tonight? I’m feeling good tonight now. The last show I played was at the iTunes Festival. I don’t know if anyone came but I much prefer this little gathering” Ellie mentioned to the intimate audience. It was then time for Figure 8 and this is a song which got the audience moving. My favourite part had to be the powerful chorus and the luscious verses.  It was then onto Salt Skin which features on début album Lights. I really liked this tune but it was lacking something and this being the drum battle. Apart from that, Salt Skin was faultlessly delivered. 

It’s actually quite nice having my band quite nice and close to me” Goulding said before her favourite track from upcoming sophomore album Halcyon and this being My Blood. This was a stunning tune and you understand why it is Ellie’s favourite. My Blood was a beautiful ballad with a catchy hook and a sombre melody.  “I’m quite shy tonight” Ellie then revealed before another new song and this being Joy. “It’s kind of about realisation” she then went onto say. I found this to be a sweet sounding ballad, with beautiful lyrics and a soothing melody. You cant help but fall in love with this uplifting number. “Is everyone good? I tweeted earlier that I was just going to be playing Jazz tonight. I said I’m not going to be playing any songs but I’m going to have a jam for a couple of hours. That’s still possible” Goulding said before having a short jam. It was then onto Explosions which was written about someone who isn’t around any more. This entrancing song was an emotional ballad which was delivered at a steady pace. It’s lyrics were impeccable and it is a tune that I completely adore. Explosions is definitely single material. It was then onto something I thought had been retired and this being Guns & Horses. Ellie took to her acoustic guitar to sing this wonderful pleasing tune. Everyone was literally singing along to this especially to its chorus. This is a fantastic song and I do miss early Ellie Goulding when she played acoustic guitar. “So this next song, sort of ended up being in this amazing film that I saw” Goulding mentioned before I Know You Care which featured in the film Now Is Good. It was actually a break up ballad which was both beautiful and mellowing. The Writer then followed on straight after. This being a swooning ballad which I find to be rather slushy. The Writer was a song about not wanting to change for anyone. It was then onto another new song and this being Only You. This tune can easily get you moving and the lyrics are really catchy. It also sounded like a chipmunk is singing parts of this number. After Ellie was frantically banging her drumskin in front of her and this then was gelled to Under The Sheets which was her début single. I even sang along to the infectious chorus.  “This sort of feels like I’m singing in my living room. Compared to the last show that’s all I got in my head at the moment” Goulding said before the lead single from Halcyon and this being Anything Could Happen. When I first heard this I wasn’t sure about it, but I have found it to be a grower after having heard it plenty of times. The vibe was electro pop and it does sound different but it was delivered superbly. At the same time it was like a work out plus it was extremely infectious.  Lights was a powerful and catchy number which had plenty of people singing along to it. The set ended with Animal. This was delivered perfectly and it had a powerful chorus. Animal does get you moving as I thought the beat was amazing. “This is the part where we go off. There’s not anywhere to go” Ellie said before kicking the encore off with the beautiful ballad Your Song which was an Elton John cover which was an outstanding version. Goulding’s version of Your Song was used in the Christmas campaign for John Lewis in 2010. This number was beautifully delivered with Chris Ketley on the piano. The evening was then capped off with the infectious and audience pleasing Starry Eyed.

SET LIST

Don’t Say A Word
Halcyon
Figure 8
Salt Skin
My Blood
Joy
Explosions
Guns & Horses
I Know You Care
The Writer
Only You
Under The Sheets
Anything Could Happen
Lights
Animal

ENCORE

Your Song
Starry Eyed

OVERALL: It was wonderful to be one of the lucky 350 who were successful to purchase tickets to this intimate gig. I find things like this to be extremely special because you are up close to the artist.

The sophomore album is always the trickiest because you need to please fans who adored the début. Lights was an incredible effort with formidable songs such as The End, I’ll Hold My Breath, Everytime You Go, You’re Biggest Mistake among many others. Halcyon has had a mixed reaction, some people love it and some people don’t. From what was performed from the new album I found them to grow on me. Songs such as My Blood, Explosions, Figure 8 and Only You were incredible when played live.

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