Art School Girlfriend | Elizabeth Liddle – 5th April 2019 – Newcastle Cluny

Review and photos by Victoria Wai (Victoria Wai)

Have you ever been to a gig where everything feels complete and then at the end of it you think, ‘what just happened?’ I have been to gigs where I have had ‘moments’ and there are only a handful, yes I can actually count them on one hand, where I have become so immersed in the gig that I have forgotten most of it because each second was perfect. I had people come talk to me before and after the support act and headliner. I remember those parts but tell me to describe the gig for you and I am a bit lost for words. Thankfully I managed to grab a setlist to trigger some moments.

So, Friday 5th April at Cluny 2, what can I tell you?

Local girl Elizabeth Liddle opened the night. She quietly took her place behind the keyboard where her fingers glided over the keys giving us gorgeous melodies with her silky powerhouse vocals. They held the audience captivated and most of them hidden in the seated area at the back of the venue. It was a dreamy set so why would you not want to sit back and relax but as her name gets known there’s no doubt in my mind there will be more bodies in the room that they will want to get closer to the action.

Elizabeth Liddle – 5th April 2019 – Newcastle Cluny

Credit to all that turned up to this venue to see this artist on this date as before Art School Girlfriend was announced I had my heart set on another show that was rescheduled, then another was announced and a few more that I would have loved to have gone to but as soon as I saw this show scheduled I knew that there was only one I would and could attend and those that joined me also knew that there was only one show to be at especially after hearing what they had to say afterwards.

The room took a moment’s silence as the electro pulsating beats of Distance opened the show as Art School Girlfriend, AKA Polly Mackey, and her band settled on stage and a few more bodies took to the floor area. After each song the audience sent rapturous applause and a few thumping yells of ‘yes!’. We are a relatively smaller crowd than I anticipated but we made sure our appreciation was heard as ASG sends us into a whirl of electro dreamscapes from the opening number to the last note. We get the tracks from her previous two EPs, Measures and Into The Blue Hour, and are also introduced to the latest single Come Back To Me and an even newer one called Diving.

I realised during Uncomfortable Month that I was actually singing along at a mild volume to every word besides Diving. Until this night for a while I have skilled the art of lip-syncing as I have noticed at a few gigs my fellow gig-goers can over-sing the artist which can get annoying but the sound was loud enough that I didn’t realise I was actually singing until I mouthed my favourite lyrics of ASG’s which is, “You’re so shy, I could kill you out of love.” I even caught myself smiling at this point too. It’s a lyric that just GETS me!

There have been a few gigs I have been looking forward to going into 2019 but this gig was the one that I anticipated the most and I don’t know why but after the night I knew I was right to trust that gut feeling. A few I spoke to afterwards eagerly waited to try and talk to Polly after the show. I say try as some then left without a word as she left them speechless.

I am unsure if these words are really a ‘review’ so to speak but what I can say is that from having  seen Art School Girlfriend at a festival and a rowdy showcase where people were queuing to get in (and many missing her set due to the numbers) to a solo support show for another artist and two headlines of decent audience numbers in Newcastle, every performance has been quite euphoric and the most recent one tops them all. Art School Girlfriend will soon be mouthed from the lips of more people and the best thing about it is that she is so humble that I don’t think she realises just how great she is and how the music captures others souls.


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