Phoebe Austin’s debut EP launch was set in St Peters Church, Sudbury, it was a lovely setting which added the desired dramatic effect.
With a quick ‘Hello’ from somewhere Phoebe started singing to a backing track of strings and to be honest I wasn’t sure what was happening as I couldn’t see her. However, Phoebe came from the back and worked her way through the audience to the stage.
For the second track was Phoebe was on the keyboard – there were quite a few instruments on stage therefore it was curious to understand the set up as there was no one else about. The format was not clear at this stage.
A couple more tracks with Phoebe on her guitar, another instrument added to her musical talent. Her voice is mature with husky and haunting elements, has a good range, is able to be soft and also powerful and a tone which is very on trend.
The church setting made for interesting acoustics, where it added to the drama and hyped up the emotions with the reverb, however it was harder to hear the clarity of the words and the chat with the audience wasn’t as clear as it could have been. There was muddying of the lower tones yet you could still hear her voice was strong.
After several tracks of her favourite covers and her own songs, Phoebe called up her first special guest: Leon O’Leary for a performance together. I last saw Leon O’Leary as he got voted through to the final of BurySOUND and it was good to see him again with Izzy, now Izzy comes with a guitar! These guys had a set of their own while Phoebe rested and it was lovely to hear these two again – they have great melodies and harmonies and the additional guitar added texture and depth to the tracks.
Next up was Phoebe with Matt Pagan from Collabro! They did a few tracks together and then the band came out for the duet ‘Shallow’ – their voices worked well together and was very enjoyable.
The last section of the night, the main event, was Phoebe and the band playing some more of her favourite covers with tracks from her new EP interspersed. Each song was introduced with what it means to her/why she wrote it and it she made it clear which song was on the EP.
It was more than a lonely EP launch, it was an entertaining show case night, adding other artists for the enjoyment of the audience and a good build up to the tracks on the EP. They all sounded great with the full band.
The 5 track EP is dramatic, emotional and heartfelt, it’s very listenable and it’s no wonder ‘Serenity’ is already out there getting radio plays. Each song tells a story we can all relate to.
Phoebe Austin is a confident and talented 16-year-old and it’s worth giving her a listen. Her new EP is called ‘Wreckage of Desire’ and is out now.
This review first appeared on GrapevineLIVE