Live Review: The Divine Comedy at York Barbican

I’ve been to a fair number of gigs over the years, and I remember them really well. There was the raucous (Motorhead in Newcastle), the stadium events (U2 in the distance at Leeds), the ‘wow! they’re playing here!’ (REM in Hull), the legend can’t quite cut it any more (Dylan in Hyde Park), as well as many more intimate affairs. But I don’t think I’ve ever seen a gig that mixed pathos and comedy in the way that The Divine Comedy did in York.

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Live Review: Gary Stewart’s Graceland at Pocklington Arts Centre

The first time I saw this fantastic show celebrating Paul Simon’s Graceland album, it was the summer of 2019. The Crescent in York heaved with noise and sweat, everybody was on their feet. It was among the best gigs I’ve been to in recent years. This time, a more sober atmosphere prevailed. Pocklington Arts Centre’s audience are older, demure, and a little resistant to getting out of their seats. They listen. They don’t, on the whole, make a fuss. Which can be a two- edged sword for a performer. You have to win them over.

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