Live review: Bat For Lashes

Natasha Khan was back performing in London for her UK tour finale – and what a show it was.

The two-time Mercury Prize nominee performed a stirring set at Shepherd’s Bush Empire last Tuesday, enchanting the audience with her floating, rhythmic dance moves which put her at one with the music.

The multi-instrumentalist darted around the stage, pounding a drum and at one point hoisting up an amp, before taking a seat at the piano to perform Laura.

There isn’t one musician or artist she can be likened to. Instead each song reminds you of someone different - Bjork, Kate Bush, Cat Power.

Despite this Khan emanates a completely individual sound and style, which the crowd couldn’t get enough of.


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There was a good mix of songs from all three of her critically-acclaimed albums and she glided from one to the next, the crowd taking its cues from her – dancing when she danced and falling silent for her slower ballads.

Khan managed to create a euphoric atmosphere throughout and she performed with the confidence and energy of someone who loves every second of what she’s doing.

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The crowd was perhaps ready for it, having just watched an intense performance from the warm-up act Nadine Shah, who is probably as far from upbeat as you can get. But the former jazz singer has a stunning and penetrating voice that commands your attention, which was the quiet before the storm of Bat for Lashes.

Her debut album Love Your Dum And Mad is probably best described as mournful and heartbreaking, but nonetheless this is yet another female singer who could be headed for big things in the future.

For Khan, this was her homecoming show - telling the adoring crowd “It’s good to be back” - having toured the UK and summer festivals with her latest album, The Haunted Man.

She performed some newer songs, including the energetic All Your Gold and Oh Yeah, as well as songs from her first album, such as What’s A Girl To Do, all accompanied by a band and a string section.

The encore featured a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s Rhiannon before ending with a resounding performance of her first hit single Daniel.

This was Bat For Lashes at her best: Stunning voice, killer dance moves that would give Kate Bush a good run for her money and a crowd that embraced every minute of it.

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