It began with a bang, a slop and a stomp. The bang of the arm, the slop of a craft beer and the stomp of a ’90s heel, Lykkie Li’s audience are the antithesis of their matriarch who glided on-stage after her band of merry bearded men. Glittering in midnight blue, set against funeral parlour curtains, Lykkie Li is looking calm and keeping it Scandinavian cool.
Then, reverberation floods the packed Vicar Street venue, slowly, the guitar picks up for the ever so slightly nasally rendition of I Never Learn. Fluidly moving from Sadness Is A Blessing to Just Like A Dream Lykkie Li eases herself into the performance. Meanwhile the majority of the crowd look on in equal parts wide-eyed and wordless, the rest treading the well-worn path towards the bar.
Her stage presence is second to none however, as she reaches out and addresses the crowd at every turn. It’s hard to take your eyes off her, firstly because she is normally lit up but secondly the way in which she moves around the stage. She is inclusive with her beseeching words of ‘’let’s all be lonely together’’ for Sleeping Alone. A Little Bit is a knock out, Lykkie Li united the crowd yet again with her orchestral waving of the drum stick.
Elliot Sumner the warm up act gets called up for Get Some in which the two of them dutifully bash their mic stands and sing in call and response format. The Drake cover of Hold On, We’re Going Home is dark and dramatic, exceeding that of the original. ‘’It’s hard being on tour you know, but nights like this make it all worth it’’ she beamed before finishing on the strong and mournful encore of Heart of Steel. If only it were possible to follow Lykkie Li’s calm exit off stage instead of preparing elbows, feet and hair for the second bout of banging, slopping and stomping of the night.