First Aid Kit - Albert Hall Manchester
If sisters Johanna and Klara (aka Swedish indie-folk band First Aid Kit) are in any way daunted by their meteoric rise to fame, they hide it well. With festival appearances and sold out shows on both sides of the Atlantic now commonplace, the future looks bright for these young ladies from Stockholm. And judging by their performance at Manchester's beautiful Albert Hall, not only are they coping with the pressure, they're also having a marvellous time.
Beginning with 'Stay Gold', the title track of their splendid third album (and major label debut), the sisters regale the enthusiastic crowd with a generous selection of tunes taken primarily from that album and 2012's The Lion's Roar. Dressed in spangly gold outfits, the pair showcase their note-perfect harmonies and endearing stage presence, never missing a beat despite some pretty energetic dancing and head-banging. From the silly fun of 'King of the World' and 'Heaven Knows', to heartfelt ballads such as 'Shattered and Hollow' and 'A Long Time Ago', they spellbound the appreciative audience.
Highlights (of which there are many) are the magnificent 'Wolf' from Lion's Roar and the Jack White rocker 'Love Interruption'. Another lovely moment is when the two sisters step away from their mics for an unplugged rendition of 'Ghost Town' from their first album, 2010's The Big Black & The Blue, the crowd singing softly along.
Finishing off the set with their trump card, the magnificent 'The Lion's Roar' that had the audience cheering in delight, the duo returned for a three song encore ending with crowd favourite 'Emmylou'. A perfect end to a perfect evening.
Stay Gold, Blue, King of the World, Waitress Song, Shattered & Hollow, In the Hearts of Men, Cedar Lane, Ghost Town, My Silver Lining, Wolf, Love Interruption (Jack White cover), Heaven Knows, The Lion's Roar
A Long Time Ago, Master Pretender, Emmylou