Lyla Foy | Live Review

Lyla Foy @ The Louisiana, Bristol. 17.03.14.

We can only wish every first tour is as striking as hers has been…

Foy‘s performance at the Loui’ on the 17th was really quite… lovely? It’s the kind of word your Year Five teacher would tell you off for using (usually with the same disdainful tone reserved only for ‘nice’). But as any tatty old dictionary can attest, ‘lovely’ could be the only word appropriate for Foy’s show. Here’s the definition straight from the pages: ‘adj 1 very beautiful, highly pleasing and enjoyable’. Filled with country air and sparkling with carefree whimsy, her take on lo-fi pop ticked all of the above.

An easy, breezy performing style came across effortlessly, her enjoyment of sharing the new album evident. The Louisiana gives off a cosy vibe whenever you pop in, and Foy’s accommodating chat made that welcoming atmosphere all the more apparent. Her voice is softly striking, strong and sunny. It’s heartfelt, but not soppy. She’s matter-of-fact as she looks back - some lyrics could come across as overly sentimental, but Foy always stops short of too much becoming too much.

The unexpected synth sounds help her here, taking what could easily be a very straight-up girl-with-guitar set in an intriguing direction. Some of these noises (one particularly startling and balloon-y) sound ever so slightly misplaced, but they do add interesting layers and definitely keep you on your toes.

Stand-outs from the set were ‘Easy’, performed entrancingly by Foy and her band of “pretty-boys” (her words!), and ever-gorgeous ‘No Secrets’, from way back to when she was known as WALL. Her decision to draw her music closer to her real-life persona as played out excellently so far, her glowy lyrics and compellingly detailed melodies seeming to match her real-life self seamlessly.

There must be a bit of cash in claiming back your name too. There’s a full band, lighting rig and magical mural backdrop on a first album tour. It looks fantastic, and more power to her. Genuinely talented emerging artists like Foy need all the help they can get, and we can only wish every first tour is as striking as hers has been. Here’s hoping it leads to lots more performances as ‘lovely’ as this one in the future.

Watch ‘Shoestring’ here:

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