Jens Lekman @ Brudenell Social Club, Leeds – 30 March 2017

Posted by Zyllah Moranne-Brown on Thursday Mar 30, 2017 Under Singer/Songwriter

Review by John Murphy . Pictures courtesy of Ellika Henrickson.

I don’t know what it is about Jens Lekman, but there’s something that brings out the protective in audiences. And so when the 36 year old Swede strode onto stage and announced “I’m not feeling my best I’m afraid, guys….I have a spot of ‘flu…”, you could hear the collective ‘awww’ rise up from the crowd. “Someone give Jens a hug” came the cry from one wag, obviously unaware of the contagious nature of influenza.

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Yet it wasn’t a hug that Lekman wanted from the Leeds crowd tonight, but help with singing. And it was a challenge that the Brudenll Social Club more than rose to. He may not be a household name, but over the last 17 years Lekman has amassed a strong and loyal following, the sort who’ll sing every line back to their hero. And as he launched into an acoustic version of early song ‘Black Cab’ (with the appropriate line “you’re oh so silent, Jens”), the audience acted as a mass choir.

Although it was obvious that Lekman was struggling a bit vocally, you couldn’t dampen down the vibe of complete joy that seemed to emanate from the stage, especially when Lekman’s all-female backing band joined him onstage. He has the uncanny knack of writing songs that, despite often having some very sad, dark lyrics, are infectiously upbeat, and his latest album ‘Life Will See You Now’, sees him on the top of his game. ‘What’s That Perfume You Wear’ immediately had the crowd dancing, bouncing and singing along, which is some doing for a song about a man smelling his ex-girlfriend’s perfume and moping their lost relationship.

The setlist leaned pretty heavily on ‘Life Will See You Now’, although there was still room for early favourites such as ‘The Opposite of Hallelujah’ and ‘A Postcard To Nina’. It was the new material that really stood out though, especially the tongue-twisting chorus to ‘Wedding In Finistere’, and the gorgeous, wistful ‘Hotwire The Ferris Wheel’ (with the crowd standing in for the sadly absent Tracey Thorn).

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Sadly, as the evening wore on, it became obvious that an increasingly croaky Jens may well have to cut the evening short – and after 50 minutes and a final acoustic flourish of ‘You Are The Light’, so it proved to be. “I’m so sorry to leave you early guys, I promise I’ll be back soon to make up for it”. Judging by the crowd’s adoration, there won’t be many people holding it against him.

One Response to “Jens Lekman @ Brudenell Social Club, Leeds – 30 March 2017”

  1. Jens Lekman review | John's Random Musings Says:

    […] full review can be read over at GigJunkies.com – hopefully, Jens will make good on his promise to come back soon when he’s at full […]

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