Saturday, March 18, 2006

Music - Bic Runga - 'Birds' album launch

Bic Runga gave a beautiful 'australian album launch' concert at the State Theatre last night.
'Birds' is her 3rd cd (my favourite would be her 2nd - Beautiful Collision).

Recently I've been getting news of various deaths and births from my friends. The theme continued last night. First off I finished reading the Italian classic The Leopard (which I highly recommend), with it's moving ending of the dying years of a great Italian family. And during the concert's intermission I found a message on my mobile phone unexpectedly telling me the sex of a much loved friend's baby (unyet born). There on stage, Bic christened 'Birds'.

She started with some old songs, including Sway, Something Good and She Left On A Monday, and a stunning version of I Will Wait For You (but in the original French) from The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. I hope she records this one day. Unfortunately the backing band couldn't really do justice to that song, but her singing of it was emotional and really just perfection.
Bic appeared in canary yellow on a darkened stage for the second half, in which she sung all the songs from the new album. Neil Finn was part of her backing band, singing and playing the piano. Bic and Neil go well together. Their songs and their personal styles have a similar crumpled loveliness to them.
During a 2-song encore, she and Neil Finn stayed on stage together to sing (a beautiful song who's name I can't remember - was it That's Alright??). Again, perfect.
Bic's clear voice is so intimate and personal at times that it feels like she should be singing in a smokey club, but no club I know of deserves such a great singer. From now on, Bic should only appear in smokey clubs in movies. In movies, life is allowed to be better than real life. And like all the best singers, Bic is better than real life.

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