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Lewis Capaldi - O2 Academy, Birmingham 25.11.2019

In the short three years of his rise to fame and online regal royalty, Scottish online superstar Lewis Capaldi has triumphed from his ‘Lost On You’ days in dingy dive bars up north to dominating a sold-out UK tour that’s got venues packed to their brims with adoring fans. We followed Capaldi’s latest UK adventure with company that sees him solidify the success of his 2019 ‘Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent’ and continue his growing repertoire as Scotland’s banterous sweetheart.

Bursting onto the stage first was the ever so lovely Grace Carter, armed with her beloved viral hits like ‘Wicked Games’ and ‘Fired Up.’ Carter put out a phenomenal set, her outstanding vocal capabilities were complimented with a bubbly attitude and humbling personality that made it easy to love her. I appreciate Capaldi and team’s effort of inclusivity on their tour, offering a platform for a black female artist to project her talents into an audience of prominently white youngsters who wouldn’t avidly search for upcoming black UK talents. Grace Carter is an unmissable support on this tour and underdog to look out for in the upcoming scene.

This tour carries just one support act, but within reason as just a short 10 minutes after Carter’s performance fans were beginning to get riled up in short-patience for Capaldi to appear. As he was due on stage the room was packed to every corner making it impossible to even reach the merch table, it felt humbling to see when reflecting on his last UK tour in the sold-out 02 Institute. Capaldi’s success is growing bigger than him and his team even realise, it shouldn’t be long before he’s smashing out stadium tours.

And thus the night kicked off with the emotional ‘Grace.’ Capaldi’s music history is short but inspirational, he didn’t shy away from pulling out all the emotional power ballads like ‘Somebody You Loved’ and ‘Bruises’ and sprinkled some livelier bangers such as ‘Hollywood’ resulting in a rollercoaster of emotions. In an effort to break-away from the emotional undertone of his music, Capaldi’s charismatic personality shun through the brief moments of the show to create what felt like a stand-up routine. From his back and forth banter to the crowd to sharing small anecdotes of his travels, the fan-proclaimed ‘American Sweetheart’ and hailed king of Scottish Twitter used his ‘Jack the lad’ personality to give breaks from the emotional weight of his music and make the night even more entertaining.

It’s truly amazing to see someone so in touch with their emotions, especially in a climate that still condemns men for being emotionally available. Though his shows are for all ages like couples, your grandparents, your siblings or your mates, because of his boisterous ‘lad’ personality he attracts a similar following of ‘Dark Fruit’ lads. It’s comforting to know that Capaldi’s shows offer a safe space for attendees to become in touch with their emotional side and maybe feel upset, heartbroken or cry. In a world that’s telling men to ‘man up’ Capaldi tells society to, in his own words, ‘f- off.’

Closing the night with ‘Someone You Loved’ and hearing every single voice in that room sing even louder than the Scotts man had it written in black and white, there’s much greater things in store for Lewis Capaldi and this is only the beginning. If you want good laughs and emotional power ballads, it’s a Lewis Capaldi show.

Review - Yasmine Summan

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