Nick Harper Live Review @ Half Moon (Putney) - 02 May 2009
Photo: Mark Landells
The last time I had seen Nick Harper perform was with his father, folk artist Roy, in 1992 in Tel Aviv. The Nick of yesteryear - head bent over guitar, laying low, not talking to the audience - bore no resemblance to the accomplished and assured artist who took to the stage here tonight.
During this first of two sell-out shows at London's Half Moon, he clearly demonstrated that he can hold his own with the crowd - and more. His guitar skills - as displayed on the fast and furious "Karmageddon", for example - are second to none; that coupled with his big elastic voice (which ranges from tender and sweet on the mellow likes of "Two-Way Thing" and "Before They Put Me In The Ground", to ardent and fiery in "Aeroplane"), and his witty banter with the audience in between songs, make for entertainment that is all-encompassing.
As for the songs, they are literal soundscapes from his life and run the gamut of every emotion in the book, whether they be about his father ("Crazy Boy"), mother ("Imaginary Friend") or children ("Blood Song", "Sunshine").
We were treated to two of his traditional guitar string breaks (this is a party trick that apparently started out as an accident way back when and worked its way into his performances to a point where the crowd actually waits for them to happen), the news of an older sister he never knew he had, Betty the Sat-Nav (don't ask - you had to be there), and German Jazz bands (also don't ask).
Of note to the guitarists out there, I noticed that he tuned his guitar down even a bit lower than I remember the songs being played - by at least another semitone. Perhaps a sign that his voice is getting lower and just trying to accommodate that, or is he just trying to keep us on our sonic toes?
Either way, it was a night to remember.
- Thu 6th Jun 2013 Nick HarperTaylor John's House (Coventry)Buy Tickets
- Sun 9th Jun 2013 Nick HarperCraigmore Bowling Club (Isle of Bute)Buy Tickets
- Thu 27th Jun 2013 Nick HarperThe Musician (Leicester)Buy Tickets
- Fri 6th Sep 2013 Nick HarperThe Basement - City Screen (York)Buy Tickets
- Thu 28th Nov 2013 Nick HarperThe Flowerpot (Derby)Buy Tickets
You may also be interested in
- Wed 22nd May 2013 to Fri 26th Jul 2013 Jools Holland and His Rhythm 'n Blues Orchestra, Roland GiftBuy Tickets
- Fri 24th May 2013 to Sun 26th May 2013 Plymouth VolksFest 2013Buy Tickets
- Thu 30th May 2013 to Fri 4th Oct 2013 Jools Holland and his Rhythm 'n Blues OrchestraBuy Tickets
- Wed 12th Jun 2013 to Sun 4th Aug 2013 LevellersBuy Tickets
- Thu 13th Jun 2013 Hampton Court Palace Festival 2013, Jools Holland and his Rh...Hampton Court Palace (Kingston upon Thames)Buy Tickets
- Fri 14th Jun 2013 Isle of Wight Festival 2013, The Stone Roses, Paul Weller, E...Seaclose Park (Newport [Isle of Wight])Buy Tickets
- Sat 29th Jun 2013 Ludlow Arts Festival 2013, Jools Holland and his Rhythm 'n B...Ludlow Castle (Shropshire)Buy Tickets
- Fri 5th Jul 2013 Cornbury Festival 2013, Squeeze, Imelda May, Beverley Knight...The Great Tew Park (Oxfordshire)Buy Tickets
- Sat 6th Jul 2013 Cornbury Festival 2013, Keane, Echo and the Bunnymen, The Pr...The Great Tew Park (Oxfordshire)Buy Tickets
- Sun 7th Jul 2013 Love Supreme Jazz Festival 2013, Jools Holland and his Rhyth...Glynde Place (Lewes)Buy Tickets
- Sun 7th Jul 2013 Cornbury Festival 2013, Van Morrison, Amy MacDonald, Bellowh...The Great Tew Park (Oxfordshire)Buy Tickets
- Fri 12th Jul 2013 Kew the Music 2013, Jools Holland and His Rhythm 'n Blues Or...Kew Gardens (London)Buy Tickets
- Sat 13th Jul 2013 Magic Summer Live 2013, Jamiroquai, Joss Stone, Soul II SoulStoke Park (Guildford)Buy Tickets
- Sun 14th Jul 2013 Magic Summer Live 2013, Bryan Adams, James Morrison, Squeeze...Stoke Park (Guildford)Buy Tickets
- Fri 19th Jul 2013 Music on the Hill 2013, Jools Holland and his Rhythm 'n Blue...Kings Hill (West Malling)Buy Tickets
- Sat 20th Jul 2013 Splendour 2013, Jake Bugg, Squeeze, KT Tunstall, Maximo Park...Wollaton Park/ Hall (Nottingham)Buy Tickets
- Sun 21st Jul 2013 Forestry Commission Live Music 2013, Jools Holland and his R...Westonbirt Arboretum (Gloucester)Buy Tickets
- Fri 26th Jul 2013 Cambridge Folk Festival 2013, Bellowhead, Levellers, LAPD, S...Cherry Hinton Hall (Cambridge)Buy Tickets
- Mon 29th Jul 2013 Jools Holland and his Rhythm 'n Blues Orchestra, Gilson Lavi...The Sands Centre (Carlisle)Buy Tickets
- Thu 1st Aug 2013 to Sun 4th Aug 2013 Camp Bestival 2013Buy Tickets
- Sat 3rd Aug 2013 Camp Bestival 2013, Mark OwenLulworth Castle (Dorset)Buy Tickets
- Sun 11th Aug 2013 Brecon Jazz Festival 2013, Jools Holland and his Rhythm 'n B...Market Hall (Brecon)Buy Tickets
- Thu 15th Aug 2013 to Sun 18th Aug 2013 Green Man Festival 2013Buy Tickets
- Fri 16th Aug 2013 to Sun 18th Aug 2013 Beautiful Days 2013Buy Tickets
- Sat 17th Aug 2013 Green Man Festival 2013, Band of Horses, Ben HowardGlanusk Park (Brecon)Buy Tickets
- Sun 18th Aug 2013 Rewind - the '80s Festival 2013, ABC, The Pointer Sisters, P...Temple Island Meadow (Henley-on-Thames)Buy Tickets
- Sun 25th Aug 2013 CarFest 2013, Jools Holland and His Rhythm 'n Blues Orchestr...Laverstoke Park Farm (Hampshire)Buy Tickets
- Sat 31st Aug 2013 Off The Tracks 2013, Simon Friend's Seismic SurveyDonington Park Farmhouse Hotel (Derbyshire)Buy Tickets
- Thu 17th Oct 2013 FaustusThe Forge (Camden)Buy Tickets
- Tue 22nd Oct 2013 to Sun 27th Oct 2013 Roy HarperBuy Tickets
- Thu 31st Oct 2013 to Sun 22nd Dec 2013 Jools Holland and his Rhythm 'n Blues Orchestra, Melanie CBuy Tickets