I want Candie.
The range of gig sizes at T on The Fringe allows for all types of acts from the stadium rockers like the Foo Fighters right down to up snd coming hopefuls like Candie Payne, and with the festival in the swing for a whole month its possible to bump into them all. This is particularly apt as when entering the venue, this writer managed to physically bump into Ms. Payne, herself sorting out the guest list but thankfully apologies were quickly offered by all parties and no harm was done to the singer (or the writer.)
From the very first track, its apparent the singer possesses an excellent voice, even if the singing voice is in start contrast to the spoken voice. The between song banter is conducted in one of the most Scouse accents you'll be likely to hear outside of Liverpool.
'I Wish I Could Have Loved You More' managed to get the crowd singing away and it was certainly the spikiest song of the set so far, the crowd was a strange mix, it was a bit subdued and suffered from the curse of couples who like to chat throughout a gig but then overly roar their approval at their favourite album track, no doubt they then spend the weekend at their dinner parties recalling how brilliant the gig was and how they clapped and cheered.
The set continued with a change to the lineup with acoustic guitars and a flute being brought on for a few B-sides, which Payne said they had never attempted before, which isnt always what you want to hear but on the whole, it worked out well. 'Its Not Too Late' was good but the follow-up was a cover of the Buffalo Springfield song 'Expecting To Fly.' Payne would be the first to admit she doesnt have a voice that is comparative to Neil Young but she managed the song well, slightly slowing the pace down and making the track even more wistful.
When the full band came back on, the set stepped up in gear and it was quite funky, in that late 1960s style which Emma Bunton attempted to build a solo career on. Is it right that Payne should be praised for looking backwards while Bunton was derided, just because of her background? Perhaps the indie-cred attached to Payne stands her in good stead but the organ fills were a clear highlight of the music on show. 'Too Late For That Now' featured a great bass line and a feel of the Walker Brothers about it but the song was let-down by some rather lazy lyrics which didnt appeal.
'Why Should I' was the last song before the encore, which was a bit slow and strange but the current single 'One More Chance' closed the show on a high, with the song sounding very much like something The Concretes would knock out.
There may nothing new about the music that Candie Payne offers up but more importantly, she has a voice worth hearing.