Jamie Lidell wants to be Jim, but I want to be Jamie Lidell! Last time I saw Jamie, he came out solo wearing a sparkling jacket under a blazer, like hiding his true self, looking very very funky. Almost a week ago now, he came out this time with five people to join him on stage, wearing a similar looking jacket, but no blazer this time. No need of showing who he has become, the ultimate soul revitalizer.
Things have changed quite a bit on stage for Lidell. He doesn't have a sampler and a mic only anymore. He has guys taking care of keyboards, drums, bass guitar, saxophones and vocoders, and one guy processing live video as the show happens. He also has one small TV with a turntable where he fake-plays records as he goes from song to song, and one hilarious use you will see at the end of the show.
Not only the stage has changed, but also Jamie's approach to his music live. Multiply is one of my ten favorite albums of 2005 (yeah I already started thinking about my fave albums of the decade), I loved it instantly, and loved it even more after seeing the man doing his tricks live with that album for the first time. He totally re-interpreted his songs by using samples, pre-recorded tracks and manipulating his own truly awesome voice. That futuristic show of soul influenced music seems to be being left in the past. Lidell went back old school having a proper band sound and it fits him exceptionally well. I haven't seen Sharon Jones, Amy Winehouse or any other people working these music genres, but I doubt any of them would make me smile and feel like I was at a show sometime between the 70's and 80's, thinking that I was seeing the future of the soul in front of my eyes.
There was not much difference between Sunday's and Monday's set list, but only one song, The City. Lots from Jim, crazy improvisation with some Multiply songs, and one of my favorite encores of recent memory. Here it is the set list for both shows:
Figured Me Out
Out of My System
When I Come Back Around
A Little Bit More
The City (on Monday only)
Little Bit of Feelgood
Where D’You Go?
Wait For Me
Game For Fools
Lidell hasn't transformed all of his songs to this old school approach. All of his new songs, from Jim, are already much more straightforward than the ones on Multiply, and they all sound very alive in the new live setting, but almost all of his Multiply era songs remain intact to their other original electronic essence, being his song Multiply itself the only song I have seen he has transformed.
There are two shows to be part of at a Jamie Lidell concert these days: one featuring Jim, the Stevie Wonder like singer with a full live band, and one featuring Jamie Lidell, the crazy beat boxer and electronic music experimentalist. Like I did/do, you are gonna love them both. [photos of Sunday's show][photos of Monday's show]
Were you at the show? How did you like it?
Jamie Lidell links: Stream Multiply, Official Website, MySpace, Wikipedia, YouTube, at Warp Records, on Pitchfork Media, a video interview on P4k.tv