Beatie Wolfe and the Pack, Jazz Cafe, London
Sunday 24th February 2013
In Camden you are spoilt for choice when it comes to music venues, with most tastes catered for. One of the most well-known being Jazz Cafe. Opened in 1990, and part of the Mean Fiddler group it is a cool, stylish space with a solid reputation for the high standard of its shows and sound. Last night was no exception.
The act I had come to see was Beatie Wolfe and the Pack. Having heard her recorded output I was keen to see what she could do live – but more of that in a moment, because I have to tell you about the uniquely talented supporting act, Tallulah Rendall.
Having recently emerged from ‘the bubble’ (her words) of finishing third album The Banshee And The Moon, this independent artist was keen to showcase new songs from the recording, having sole responsibility for all the music on it. This she did by switching between guitar, keyboards and bass, looping some wonderful vocal harmonies in the process. The strength and range of her voice is impressive, with a soulful, almost operatic quality. Tallulah Rendall pens lyrics which are deeply personal, is a mesmerising performer with an abundance of energy, and received enthusiastic encouragement from her attendant fan-base throughout. A fan-base I can only see growing. The album is due out soon and, following this preview, I for one am looking forward to hearing it.
Now, where was I? Oh, yes – Beatie Wolfe. This young lady is a gorgeous creature, and I mention this because (apart from it being bloody obvious) popular culture in this country has a tendency to categorise people by the way they look. In other words, if you are too lovely, too good-looking, this is all some people see or are interested in, and they overlook the talent. This is always shallow and often a mistake. A mistake because in the case of Beatie Wolfe what you have – first and foremost – is a very talented musician, singer/songwriter.
Her speaking voice is a little deeper (and a little huskier) than expected and she has a sultry vocal style. A style in keeping with her mature songs about love and passion, lust and desire. And with the sexy warmth of glowing embers on a cold night, Beatie Wolfe’s songs draw you in to give a reassuring, passionate hug. Musically, she plays with the accomplished ease of a true professional and had excellent support from her band, The Pack ( Yaron Stavi on double-bass and Adam Hayes on drums).
Like Tallulah Rendall before her, Beatie Wolfe played some new material from her forthcoming debut album (due for release April/May ?), alongside favourites (including Pure Being and Never Ever). An altogether exquisite set of songs ending with the wonderful 1000 Kisses Deep, this talented young woman exudes class like the perfume from a rare, exotic flower. I am really looking forward to hearing the album and seeing her play live again.
So, no mere eye-candy but a girl who will be, before long (in my opinion), playing much larger venues and selling them out to critical acclaim and universal acknowledgement.