Amy Winehouse - Liverpool Carling Academy 2 - 10.11.06

“I hate Amy Winehouse”

The £12 a throw t-shirts bearing the above slogan, provides as good  an introduction to the mindset of the hardy and veracious soul-rider, as the slow climbing jazz/lounge backdrop coupled with life-bearing vocals of opener, ‘Know You Now’. This gives Amy the perfect chance to sternly stroke the crowd into submission, with her earthy soul projection and defence mechanism exposing lyrics;

“You’re just a little boy underneath that hat
You need your nerve to hide your ego – don’t come with that
You think everything is handed to you free
But it’s not that easy”

It is already apparent that the promoters have made a faux paus in fitting so many people into a venue with a small viewing area. Too many members of the crowd are staring at a brick wall (probably thinking they are at a Meatloaf gig) or someone’s head. Others make full use of the relaxingly rugged sound, turning it into background bar music. The subtle chord changes and tempo waves are largely lost, struggling to make an impact passed the large slabs of wall that separates too many from the main act. The beaming horns and vocal cruise picks up to drown out the sound problems and the pub style banter of Winehouse, makes everyone feel at home. Cries for the rebelliously defiant ‘Rehab’ punctuate the evening. This number from Amy’s rough edged, soul/jazz with Rock N’ Roll attitude offering ‘Back To Black’, has raised her profile to Jonathan Ross levels.

‘I’m No Good’ boldly makes no excuses for the much reported behaviour and attitude of the feisty songstress, making for a laid-back but feisty mood, stirring an intrigued crowd into some subtle body swaying. The battle against the venue is slowly being turned around in the young Londoner’s favour. A powerful pop jaunt by way of ‘Me And Mr Jones’, emphasises the departure from the jazzed up sound contained in the powerful ‘Frank’ album of a few years ago. ‘Rehab’ provides for a potent RnB, funk/soul ending, to the mood switching and groove styling main set. Irony seekers head over to the merchandise stall, in order to make a bold statement of their own, to the unsuspecting Friday night revellers of Liverpool.

David Adair

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