Kate VigoKate Vigo and her band certainly gave some great music at the always worthwhile Paris Cat on Friday September 21st. Jules Pasco (bass), Damian Slingsby (piano), Ben Hendry (drums), and Nathan Slater on guitar firmly supported Vigo’s light, subtle voice, as it moved easily between well-crafted originals and some interestingly obscure standards from the past.

Vigo is a versatile songwriter, and that evening her originals included the thoughtful Something Has Changed, the fine narrative of Sweet Kiss of Death, and the exuberant The Way You Are. Her voice is probably heard to best advantage on her own material, to which she seems unconsciously to bring more conviction and authority, than on other songs.

The interplay between the musicians was exceptional throughout, some instrumental highlights being the piano solo on You Let Me Down, and the rhythm on Don’t Explain, both made famous by Billie Holiday, the second co-written by her. While the performance of these latter songs was skilled, however, they actually call for somewhat more emotional experience than appears consistent with Vigo’s voice and relative youth. A case could be made for a change to song-order (eg. The Way You Are up the front), the endings of some pieces are a little indeterminate, and some more patter would be nice, but this performer and her band give great musical value, and are definitely people to look out for.

Preceded by the Michael Story Trio, performing some atmospheric improvised jazz, this was a night of strong and attractive contemporary music.

Kate Vigo

Venue: Paris Cat | 6 Goldie Place Melbourne
Date/Time: Fri 21st September, from 10:30pm
Bookings: 9642 4711

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