The moment I saw New Yorker Kristina Train announce another date at London’s Bush Hall I knew I would of liked to have be there just to witness her enchanting music live again. This was her 2nd time at the venue after Train performed there at the end of last year. Even though I heard of Kristina through word of mouth I first saw her perform live at Royal Festival Hall opening up for Amy Macdonald last year. From that very moment I fell in love and I then attended the All Our Favourite Things event at the Union Chapel. Train then announced a support slot for Ron Sexsmith then after that dates in London and Manchester were announced. When the day arrived I decided to get to the venue 3 hours before doors. Only one person was there by the time I had reached Bush Hall. The fact it was someone that I knew made the queuing experience pass by in a flash.
It was around 9.15pm when Kristina Train took to the stage wearing what look like a 1970’s hippy dress. Opening the set was Dream Of Me which was very mellowing. Kristina’s vocals were pure perfection and the style is Soul meets Pop. This was superbly written and it sounded slightly emotional as well. After plenty of applause it was then onto Pins And Needles. This was simply stunning and it was different compared to the opening number Dream Of Me. The song itself was strongly delivered and it was hypnotic at the same time. Pins And Needles was an infectious tune and Train’s vocals were spine tingling. No One’s Gonna Love You then followed on. This emotional track is actually a cover of Band Of Horses. Train’s take on this was extremely beautiful and she put everything into this number. The melody was very chilled out and Kristina’s vocals aided it perfectely. “When things start splitting at the seams and now, The whole thing’s tumbling down, Things start splitting at the seams and now, If things start splitting at the seams and now, It’s tumbling down, Hard”. “How about that Jade Hopcroft. She did such a great job. I think she was talking about maybe that she felt like she at the prom tonight. But I assure you I certainly feel like I’m at the prom tonight. I’ve been waiting for the blood to come down to feel like Carrie. Only it would be a better result for us all” Train then said before Lonely Sinner. This was a cracking song and was brilliantly delivered. It was played at a steady pace and had lyrics which were contagious. “I’m so glad you guys came out. You actually know these songs” Kristina mentioned to the audience before introducing the next tune of the evening being Saturdays Are The Greatest. This was a beautiful slow paced ballad with lyrics that can easily tug at your heart strings. “Here’s another sad one. Seems like I’m a one trick pony” Train then said before launching into Don’t Leave Me Here Alone. Yet again it was a slow paced ballad and emotional as well. Kristina’s vocals were spellbinding and she put every drop of energy into it. “This next song I wrote actually when I was living in New York. It was just these horrible winters and there’s one point where I really couldn’t even open my front door. And I thought I’ve had it, I’ve had it with these cold cold days and freezing nights. So I’m moving on to sunny days and greener pastures. So I came to London because I’m such a f’ing glutton for punishment” Train then said before diving into I Wanna Live In LA. Now I really liked the upbeat melody and Kristina’s pristine vocals geld to it perfectly. It was then onto Golden Brown. When I first saw it displayed on the set list I was puzzled to what it could be. Was it a song from her 2009 album Spilt Milk. Once the first couple of chords were played I realised that this was a cover of The Stranglers. Kristina sailed though this and delivered a perfect take of the song. She even needed the lyrics taped to the monitors just in case. During the song Train also showcased her violin skills. Stick Together opened up with heavy drumbeats then Kristina’s pleasant vocals came right in. I found this to be mellowing and mesmerising at the same time. Just hearing this performed live resulting in chills going up my spine. This was such a beautiful song with enchanting lyrics. Kristina delivered it with plenty of gusto. After a rapture of applause it was then onto Lose You Tonight. The moment Kristina launched into the song, Nerina Pallot came to my mind for some reason. This was a fantastic song aided by incredible vocals. Lose You Tonight was pacey and it was faultlessly delivered. “This is a song that we usually have one of my favourite sounds is a saw an actual saw. What do you do with a saw? I don’t know how to use one. Saw a tree You can also play it as an instrument. Well it’s on my album. It’s not here tonight. Don’t know why. The last time we played here we had a saw but that is how shit goes guys. Might as well get over it” Train then said which resulted in the audience bursting into laughter. Everloving Arms was the song and it was a beautiful ballad aided by an acoustic guitar. The hairs on the back of my neck were literally standing on edge. Someone in the audience was whistling along to parts of the song which made it haunting. “Well guys. We’ve had so much fun tonight and it went by so quickly so this is our last song” Kristina then said which resulted in a few. “Oh Man I hate when that happens. Thank you so much. We’ve had such a great time with you. Thank you so much for your support” Train then went onto say. The set then came to a close with the title track of the new album and this was Dark Black. This number is a beautiful ballad aided by strong powerhouse vocals. I actually find it a tad emotional. “I’ve never had this much fun in the Bush before” Kristina said to a rapture of applause. The band left the stage but everyone was wanting to hear more. When they came back to the stage the first song was Wish You Were Mine. This was a slick song and it was easy on the ear. Train’s vocals were sublime and she sang this Prince song to perfection. “I just want to say sincerely thank you very much for coming out tonight. I hope I see you again soon” Kristina then said before signing off with the last song that was written for the album and this being January. This song was the perfect choice to end a phenomenal night on.
Dream Of Me
Pins And Needles
No One’s Gonna Love You
Saturdays Are The Greatest
Don’t Leave Me Here Alone
I Wanna Live In LA
Lose You Tonight
Wish You Were Mine
OVERALL: First of all the support act Jade Hopcroft was literally incredible and I definitely would see her again in the future.
Secondly Kristina Train is an exceptional artist with a host of startling material underneath her belt. Her album Dark Black is a true gem and I fell in love with it the moment I listened to the record back to back. Train’s music is easy to listen to. It may be slightly sad but it is hypnotising and mellowing at the same time. And the covers of The Stranglers Golden Brown and Prince’s Wish You Were Mine were delivered to perfection.
I look forward to the day Kristina announces another date in London.