REVIEW: Kate Miller-Heidke, Adelaide Fringe 2016

Originally published in RIP IT UP

First, a negative: the seats at the Spiegeltent are bloody uncomfortable. 

Phew. Glad that’s out of the way.  

Kate Miller-Heidke is a master. In voice, ability and presence, she is unparalleled on the Australian music scene. She emerged on stage last night with little fanfare – I mean, of course the audience applauded, but she just sort of popped up out of nowhere and took to the keyboard. Within seconds, she had her audience captive, and there was no letting go until the final, glorious note was played. 

Playing through her back catalogue, as well as sharing some new gems, the vast spread of Miller-Heidke’s career was laid out luxuriously as her wonderfully controlled yet free-wheeling voice floated above the rich acoustics provided by guitarist and husband, Keir Nuttall. Together, they are a delight to watch, as with a mere look they can pass hidden messages to one another. They are a fantastically well-oiled unit, and incredibly watchable. Of the songs performed, the highlight of the evening was definitely ‘Humiliation’, a brilliantly layered composition executed with skill that showcases the best of both of their talents. 

Miller-Heidke’s shows are magical and exceptionally special. The spell she casts is truly siren-like, as her remarkable voice soars, pivots, and turns sharply downward into guttural howls of operatic beauty. Her amazing ability to hold an audience mesmerised is entirely unique. It definitely far transcends any old uncomfortable seat.  

Rating: 5 stars

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