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Review: Caitlin Rose at Hall Two, The Sage Gateshead

Martin Ellis caught country singer Caitlin Rose at The Sage Gateshead and witnessed a very special gig

Caitlin Rose
Caitlin Rose

As soon as I entered Sage’s Hall Two, I realised tonight’s gig was going to be something special.

Down in the stalls, seats and tables were laid out ‘cabaret style’ with candles flickering on every table. The atmosphere was more like an intimate club than modern theatre.

The opening act, singer-songwriter Andrew Combs, looked like the cowboy new in town in a 1960s hippy road movie.

His sound had a laid-back 1960s spirit and his songs were generally somewhat sombre.

All too often performers cross the line and are downright miserable but Combs succeeded in delivering an entertaining though mainly melancholic set.

Caitlin Rose grew up in Nashville surrounded by country music at home and on her doorstep.

She arrived boldly on stage and immediately the beat picked up.

Her voice and songs have often been compared to legendary country music divas. However, Rose is in her mid-twenties and has a rock attitude.

Her performance contrasted with but also complemented that of Combs.

Rose was bright, lively and fun. Combs joined her as a member of her excellent backing band and towards the end of the set they performed a duet.

A couple of years or so ago Caitlin played The Cluny. She has developed her stagecraft and is a polished performer who will probably be filling large venues before long. A class act and a great night out.

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