iTunes Festival – Ellie Goulding @ Roundhouse 22nd September 2013

This was the 3rd time Ellie Goulding performed iTunes Festival and I had attended all three. Maybe I was the only one who has managed to get tickets for each of the headline shows (to be honest I have been extremely lucky as a friend gave me his tickets for the first and the second someone managed to get me in as she had got two sets of tickets). There has been good support acts supporting Ellie. You had Delta Maid, then Haim now Laura Welsh all whom I enjoyed immensely.

Fast forward to 9pm you could hear the sound of the sea then Ellie came onto the stage to plenty of whoops of delight. The song kicking things off was Don’t Say A Word. This was energetic to say the least and sweet sounding as well. My favourite part had to be the middle 8. “Hello” Goulding said to the crowd before getting stuck into the title track from the sophomore album and this being Halcyon. This tune was rather pacey and it sounded rather mesmerising. Halcyon was a power pop song which tells you that things are going to be better. It was superbly delivered and Halcyon is one of my favourites from the record. “How is everyone this evening” Ellie said when the harp started to play the opening of Animal. This was taken from Bright Lights which was basically a re packaged version of the début album. I found this to be a song which was powerful and it can get you moving. “Hello everyone. It’s really good to see you” Goulding then said to the crowd before the first surprise of the evening. Now this being Starry Eyed which was a shock because it normally appears at the end. Well as for the song it was completely infectious and like what Alana Haim said about Forever the day before this was a song you just want to rage to.

Following on was Figure 8 and again this was one that got the crowd moving. The verses were luscious whilst the chorus was packed with a punch. There was a dub step feel to it and it was faultlessly delivered. It was then onto the 1st song which was released from Halcyon and two songs infused together were Hanging On / Wonderman. Hanging On was a cover by Active Child and Goulding’s vocals are superb. The melody was actually slightly mellowing and its lyrics were addictive as well. Wonderman had been cleverly infused into this mashup and this resulted in plenty of screams. What Ellie sang was her vocal parts in this tune as Tinie wasn’t there as both songs featured him. I wonder if Tinie will ever repay Ellie back when she joined him on stage at Koko?

“This next song I started off writing as a ballad thing and it just turned into something else” Goulding mentioned to the crowd before Joy. This was a sweet sounding ballad, with beautiful lyrics and a soothing melody. You cant help but fall in love with this uplifting number. It was actually a tad slushy. It was then onto a song which was special to Ellie Goulding and this being Explosions. This tune 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 track that I completely adored. “I haven’t played this song many times” Ellie said before launching into her own take of How Long Will I Love You which was originally a song by The Waterboys. This is the official Children In Need single. How Long Will I Love You was sweet sounding song and Goulding’s vocals were stunning enough to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up.

“This is a song about my Dad actually” Goulding said before I Know You Care. This featured in the film Now Is Good. It was actually a break up ballad which was both slushy and mellowing. It was then onto the beautiful take on the Elton John classic Your Song. I must say this version of this song was incredible. Chris was on piano and I found this tune to be quite touching.

My Blood was next up and this is actually Ellie’s favourite song from Halcyon. This was a stunning tune and you understand why it is Goulding’s favourite. My Blood was a beautiful ballad with a catchy hook and a sombre melody. It was onto Only You. This tune easily gets you moving and the lyrics were really catchy. It also sounded like a chipmunk is singing parts of this number. Once over Goulding was frantically banging her drumskin that was in front of her, and the ending of Only You was infused to the beginning of Under The Sheets which was her début single. I even sang along to the infectious chorus. Anything Could Happen was the lead single from Halcyon. 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. The set ended with Lights which was a powerful and catchy number. Plenty of people singing along to it. Once over Ellie and the rest of the band left the stage only to return moments later for I Need Your Love. This was a club friendly song and it is one you can have a good dance too. It was also the 7th single to be lifted from the Calvin Harris album 18 Months. The curtain closed with Burn which was Ellie’s first ever number 1 single. I must say this was simply spectacular. It was clear synthpop aided by infectious lyrics which you want to jump up and down too.

SET LIST

Don’t Say a Word
Halcyon
Animal
Starry Eyed
Figure 8
Hanging On / Wonderman
Joy
Explosions
How Long Will I Love You
I Know You Care
Your Song
My Blood
Only You
Under The Sheets
Anything Could Happen
Lights

ENCORE

I Need Your Love
Burn

OVERALL: I have witnessed Ellie Goulding perform quite alot of times over a 5 year period but I have to say that this gig has to be the best yet.

I was hoping on hearing more tracks from the recently released Halcyon Nights to be performed but that wasn’t the case. We did get How Long Will I Love You which was tender and the number 1 single Burn which was an amazing song to end on. The majority of the set were songs from the sophomore album Halcyon, but it was a pleasure to hear tracks such as Under The Sheets, Starry Eyed and Lights again. I was surprised Guns & Horses did not make an appearance as that is an outstanding acoustic number and I would love to hear This Love (Will Be Your Downfall) again.

Also the Hanging On and Wonderman infusion was quite something. All in all there was not a bad song on the night and each were delivered to perfection.

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